The window of an Oakland ice cream store was smashed by a car during a burglary

Flavor Brigade, an Oakland frozen dessert spot known for its Italian popsicles and ice cream custard, closed shop indefinitely after suffering a devastating burglary on Monday, July 18.

Just after 1:30 a.m., the Oakland Police Department received a call informing them that a business had been robbed. Footage posted to Instagram by store owners Braedon Galloway and Justin Mruskovic reveals that the perpetrators rammed and smashed the store windows with the back of their vehicle. Three masked individuals are then seen throwing benches, a freezer and a refrigerator inside the store, causing further damage in the process. Then the vehicle reverses again, but this time, into an ATM.

Damage to the store window and stolen cash are two familiar ordeals Galloway and Mruskovic have endured before. Located in the Dimond district of Oakland, Flavor Brigade has been hit by burglaries four times in its 12 years of operation, this is the third time in just two years.

Security footage shows the perpetrators taking the ATM.

Courtesy of the Flavor Brigade

“It’s happened before, so it’s not a shock in itself,” Galloway said. “It’s just a matter of how they did it, like total negligence.”

Although they only stole $530 while taking the ATM, the thieves caused more than $100,000 in damage, according to KPIX 5. A press release from OPD indicates that the investigation is ongoing and that no arrests have been made at this time.

The burglars only took $530, but left a situation that will cost a lot more to fix.
The burglars only took $530, but left a situation that will cost a lot more to fix.

Courtesy of the Flavor Brigade

“Just disbelief,” Galloway said of his reaction to the incident. “Someone went to all that effort to get an ATM in an ice cream shop.”

Although Flavor Brigade also had a store in Pleasanton, the burglary hurt their business because the Oakland site served as the “home base” where all of their products were made, Galloway said. Since the incident, the community-loved store has had the support of many of its customers, one of whom has set up a GoFundMe page to help mitigate recovery costs.

“It’s been extremely good,” Galloway said of the community’s response. “The people of Oakland are awesome. … I feel bad because everyone is picking on the reckless idiocracy of these people.

As this was not the first event for Galloway, he noted that the situation in the region merited further examination.

An interior view of the damage which amounted to approximately $100,000.
An interior view of the damage which amounted to approximately $100,000.

Courtesy of the Flavor Brigade

“This is the most serious, but there have been several very similar hits in our neighborhood,” Galloway said. “Businesses have been destroyed and just ransacked. … Crime in Oakland not only goes unpunished, but unchecked. The first two burglaries, one of them involved a gun shooting at the windows. We have glaring footage of people doing it, and they haven’t even come to watch the video.

“What happened in Oakland and the politics of Oakland and letting things run wild, that’s not fair to everyone,” Galloway continued.

While last Monday’s heist forced Flavor Brigade to put things on hold, Galloway is aiming to get things back on track.

“We will open as soon as possible and start serving ice cream again,” he said.

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