With PlayStation 3 systems fetching thousands of dollars on eBay and gamers across the country lining up to purchase Sony's $500 and $600 consoles, some unscrupulous people are seeing the launch as a quick way to make a buck at someone else's expense.
The Sacremento Bee is reporting that "at least four" PS3 systems were stolen, along with several Xbox 360s from an Elk Grove, California, GameStop by a pair of armed men Thursday morning. Elk Grove police responded by notifying local retailers and nearby police departments of the theft and advised those lining up for the system not to do so alone, and not to bring cash.
Meanwhile, Eugene, Oregon's KMTR News is reporting that three men who had been camped out in front of a Circuit City waiting for the Friday launch of the PlayStation 3 were robbed early Thursday morning.
According to the station's report, the three had left the line temporarily and were stopped by a pair of masked men as they passed a nearby Target. The two men led the trio behind the store and mugged them. Police used mall surveillance tapes to retrace the robbers' steps after the crime and were able to recover some stolen goods, including a wallet.
[UPDATE] The Associated Press is reporting on another PS3 launch incident, this one involving two men armed with guns sticking up a line of 15-20 people waiting outside a Putnam, Connecticut, Wal-Mart overnight. The two men demanded money from the group, and when one of the customers resisted, he was shot in the chest and shoulder. The AP reports that the victim is in stable condition with non-life-threatening injuries. The police are now searching for the gunmen, both believed to be in their teens.