L. MACUNGIE TWP., Pa. - About $20,000 worth of merchandise was stolen in less than a minute.

Pennsylvania State Police say an investigation is underway in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County after a handful of thieves targeted Ulta Beauty at the Hamilton Crossings around 6:30 p.m. Monday.

"Five individuals went into the Ulta Beauty Store at Hamilton Crossings in Lower Macungie Township, went inside the building with bags and stole numerous merchandise," said Trooper Nathan Branosky, public information officer for Troop M. "They fled the scene within 40 seconds of entering the store."

Investigators say they are speaking with witnesses and viewing surveillance video to piece together exactly what happened.

Branosky says the five male suspects were masked as they carried in their own bags and filled them with thousands of dollars of stolen goods.

This crime hits close to home, but it's a trend that's being tracked in other parts of the country. Smash and grab robbers, some with weapons, have been caught on surveillance video busting into high-end stores, terrorizing shoppers, and making off with thousands of dollars in lifted loot.

Branosky urges people to be safe as well as vigilant while holiday shopping. He says if you find yourself a witness to a crime, take in as much information as you can about the suspects.

"Try to be the best witness you can, whether you're inside the store or outside the store, but obviously be safe while doing so," he said.

State police say the suspects left the scene in a dark-colored sedan.

Investigators are asking witnesses to come forward.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Fogelsville Criminal Investigation Unit at (610) 395 - 1438 and reference Incident Number PA21-1595996.

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