Four people have been arrested and charged as part of an alleged phone theft ring at Lollapalooza.
According to CWB Chicago, a man brought the scheme to the attention of police at the festival after realizing his phone had been stolen by three young people in the crowd. As undercover officers monitored the situation, they reportedly witnessed the trio — Ximena Rodriguez, 24, Juan Ramirez, 25, and Arceli Quinones, 31 — steal another attendee’s phone.
In order to steal the phone, prosecutors say that one woman began grinding on a man in front of the Perry Stage while a man took the victim’s phone and passed it to a second woman, who then placed it inside of a fanny pack.
When the three Los Angeles natives were arrested, police recovered three iPhones, a stolen credit card, and a stolen I.D. card found in their possession.
The fourth suspect, 41-year-old Antony Bardales of Denver, was also arrested as part of the operation after being discovered with a bag containing 10 other iPhones. Police report that, when questioned, he claimed he had purchased all 10 devices during the festival for just $50 apiece and had plans to sell them for parts. All four have been charged with felony theft.
Rodriguez and Quinones were ordered to pay $1,000 bail by Judge Mary Marubio, who refused to let them leave the state until their next court appearance on August 8th. Ramirez was permitted to return to California by Judge Barbara Dawkins after posting $200 bail. Bardales, who was charged with eight counts of felony theft, was ordered to pay $500 bail by Judge Maryam Ahmad.
In addition to the small-scale theft ring on the first day, a security guard at this year’s Lolla was arrested for allegedly making a mass shooting threat in order to leave work early for the day.
Lollapalooza 2022 featured a history-making set from BTS member J-Hope, who headlined alongside Metallica, Lil Baby, Dua Lipa, Machine Gun Kelly, J. Cole, and Green Day. Read our recap of the festival here.