ORLANDO, Fla. – Two Pokemon Go players were robbed in separate incidents over the weekend in Orlando, prompting police to issue warnings about the gaming craze.
Phones were stolen in both robberies, which were reported late Friday night and early Saturday morning near Lake Eola Park. The victim in one incident was beaten, Orlando police said.
"With the increasing popularity of Pokemon Go, as so many people bound across the city in pursuit of virtual creatures, OPD wants to impress on our residents and visitors the importance of staying alert while playing the game," Orlando police said.
The first robbery was reported at 10:10 p.m. Friday near the corner of South Eola Drive and Pine Street. A 24-year-old man said he was playing Pokemon Go on his Apple iPhone 6 when a young man rode past him on a bicycle.
Police said a second young man, who was wearing a blue hoodie, a pink backpack and black pants, rode by and snatched his cellphone from his hand. The thief rode away on Pine Street toward Summerlin Avenue.
The second robbery was reported at 12:55 a.m. Saturday near the intersection of North Rosalind Avenue and West Robinson Street. A 28-year-old man said he was walking north on Rosalind Avenue past Lake Eola when three males started to beat him with closed fists, according to police.
One of the culprits took the victim's cellphone as he was being punched, police said. The trio fled east into Lake Eola Park.
Orlando police said players should be aware of their surroundings at all times and be on the lookout for other people, cars and bicyclists. In addition, police said:
- Don't go out alone.
- Stay in well-lit areas.
- Watch where you are walking.
- Don't trespass.
- Don't stop in traffic.
- Pay attention when crossing the street.
- If you are alone, make sure someone knows your itinerary.