Police: 2 men steal $27,000 in iPhones, call in fake rape to div - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Police: 2 men steal $27,000 in iPhones, call in fake rape to divert cops

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DARLINGTON, Wis. (KWWL) -

Darlington Police say two men broke into a U.S. Cellular store over the weekend and stole more than $27,000 worth of iPhones.

They also believe they had someone call in a fake 911 call just before the robbery, alleging someone was being raped in a cemetery across town.

"This reported rape, if you will, it didn't happen. It was a fake call, most likely was placed to divert our resources so that they could break into the US Cellular and go undetected," said Jason King, Darlington's police chief.

King says the two men left everything but the iPhones untouched in the store.

"The store has told us that the phones would be virtually worthless because you can't activate the phones, because once you activate the phone, it would identify as a stolen phone, and it would be no good," King said.

King has started to get the surveillance video out, both through Facebook and local media.  He says he's fairly certain the suspects aren't from Darlington.

"There's little doubt in our minds that this happened somewhere else, that there are other communities that have had the exact same theft with the exact same mode of operation. And we're hoping that perhaps those victims or perhaps those policing agencies will reach out to us, and will partner, work together to determine who's doing this, and bring them to justice," King said.

He added that he received a call from Dyersville Police Tuesday about a similar incident in their community.  A call to Dyersville Police to confirm has gone unreturned.

Anyone with information is asked to call Darlington police at 608-776-4983. Anonymous tips can be made at 800-606-TIPS. Callers who leave tips that lead to arrests are eligible for up to $1,000 in reward money.

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