A flash mob of about 70 looters ransacked a California gas station, causing $100,000 in losses. The owner said Oakland police took nine hours to respond.

Around 4:30 a.m. on Friday, the 76 Gas Station & Mini Market near Oakland International Airport was looted. Owner Sam Mardaie said the two employees on duty endured 40 minutes of chaos as looters broke in and vandalized the store, despite window service being the only option.

“Shelves were ripped apart, grocery items destroyed,” Mardaie told KTVU. Surveillance video showed looters stealing food and products. None of the employees were harmed.

The looters took about $25,000 in cash from the register and ATM but failed to steal the safe. Mardaie, who took over the business in August 2023, expressed his frustration: “This is the hardest thing…building yourself for the last ten months and then you’re back to square one.”

Mardaie called for better security in Oakland, stating, “Things have to be fixed somehow. The citizens of Oakland have to have some sort of security.” He acknowledged the area’s crime issues but was shocked by the severity.

The looting occurred near an area where an In-N-Out fast food restaurant closed in March due to rampant crime.

The Oakland Police Department stated officers were occupied with a nearby sideshow involving over 100 vehicles. They responded to the gas station 90 minutes after the call but found no suspects. The crime was initially marked as Priority 2 but upgraded to Priority 1 after reviewing the video. No arrests were made.

District 7 City Councilmember Treva Reid, representing the area, continues to “advocate and work to secure increased public safety resources and response,” urging Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao to prioritize these demands.