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Tech Company Robbery Victims Use App To Help Find Thieves

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Employees at a Dallas mobile app company used what they know best, technology, to help police track down some of the suspects in a takeover-style robbery at their office.

Within minutes of being robbed at gunpoint, employees of Trivie started tracking their stolen phones and computers online, and relayed the information to detectives to help them make an arrest.

Nearly every computer and cell phone was stolen from Trivie. The robbery happened Tuesday — in the middle of the afternoon. An employee who answered a knock on the stairwell door found himself face-to-face with at least three robbers, two with handguns. Employees working around a common area table were forced onto the ground. The robbers grabbed all the laptop and desktop computers, plus wallets, bags and watches, and ran out the same stairwell where they came in.

Police reports show more than $23,000 worth of items were stolen.

After looking for getaway cars though, and calling police, employees immediately gathered around the one laptop that was left. They began logging onto the Find My iPhone application. Several signals popped up, but disappeared within a few miles of the office. One employee though, the one who had answered the knock on the stairwell door, kept checking the computer even after he went home.

“You feel so helpless you got to do something,” he said, asking to keep his name private for safety concerns. “You can’t chase after them and shoot at them so, we do what we know.”

Persistence paid off. As the man ate dinner, his phone suddenly appeared again on the map, in Frisco. He notified police, and then directed them as he tracked it to Lewisville, The Colony, Carrollton and finally Dallas. He let police take over from there and said at 3 a.m. he got an email that he could rest easy. Police had his phone, and some suspects.

“That’s just the way technology people work, how can we enable a better system and how can we figure out a problem,” the company CEO said Friday. “Instead of being victims, they jumped on what they knew and that’s technology and they helped the Dallas Police find the bad guys.”

Police are still investigating the case and wouldn’t release the names of anyone arrested to CBS 11. Police reports show officials are looking for as many as five suspects, possibly got away in at least four different vehicles.

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