Two Men Report $30k Stolen From Same Bar on Different Nights

By: Chris Gorrie | Published: Feb 13, 2024

In a concerning series of events, two men, Charlie Zeanah, 27, and Micah Brown, 34, claim they were separately robbed of significant amounts—each exceeding $30,000—after visiting the same Atlanta sports bar.

The place was Five Paces Inn, and the robberies occurred on different nights. Both victims believe criminals gained access to their phones, leading to unauthorized transactions and compromises of their personal information.

Victim Wakes Up Disoriented in Moving Car with Strangers

Zeanah reported that he visited Five Paces Inn alone last week, only to wake up disoriented in a moving car with strangers. 

A photo of a blurry road from the interior of a car.

Burak The Weekender/Pexels

Despite his attempts to comprehend the situation, he found himself in the back seat, unable to speak. 


Man Recalls Being Robbed and Discovers Account Fraud

The assailants, he recalls, took his wallet, jewelry, and cellphone after stopping in an unfamiliar parking lot. 

A person piles massive amounts of banded U.S. hundred-dollar bills onto a table.

Tima Miroshnichenko/Pexels

Zeanah later discovered that around $25,000 had been fraudulently transferred from his accounts, with the thieves altering his iCloud password, restricting his access to crucial data.

Second Man Has iPhone Stolen at Five Paces Inn

Brown’s experience occurred last year when, after losing track of his iPhone at Five Paces Inn, he later received email notifications about unauthorized money transfers totaling approximately $34,000. 

Interior of a crowded bar in black-and-white.


Brown is still in the process of appealing to Venmo to recover the $12,000 stolen from his bank accounts using the app.

Exploited and Coerced While Unconscious

Both victims speculate that the criminals exploited facial recognition technology or coerced them to share their passcodes while unconscious. 

An iPhone turned sideways with the face recognition logo in the center of it.

Rafael Fernandez/Wikimedia Commons

Despite the severity of the incidents, no arrests have been made. Zeanah filed an online report with Atlanta police, receiving an automated reply indicating a response within five business days. Brown, however, did not file a police report, opting to focus on reclaiming the stolen funds through his banks.

Atlanta Police Somewhat Unresponsive

Sgt. Jarius Daugherty, a police spokesperson, emphasized the importance of victims reporting such crimes directly to 911 rather than online platforms. 

Downtown Atlanta, Georgia at nighttime. The cars on the freeways are blurs of lights.

Brett Weinstein/Wikimedia Commons

The police department lacks records of Zeanah’s incident, likely because it doesn’t align with the criteria for the online report portal. As of the latest update, the police had not contacted Zeanah. The bar in question, Five Paces Inn, has not responded to requests for comment, leaving the establishment’s role in these incidents unclear.


Similar Crimes in New York City

In the past year, eight men faced accusations of drugging and robbing around thirty bar and nightclub attendees in New York City, resulting in the tragic deaths of at least seven individuals. With the exception of one suspect, all others entered pleas of not guilty and currently await trial.

New York City at dusk, with the Empire State Building in the center.

Dllu/Wikimedia Commons

Apple responded by introducing Stolen Device Protection, a security feature requiring additional measures to check or change passwords in unfamiliar locations.


Similar Crimes in Austin

A comparable pattern emerged in Austin, Texas, where approximately a dozen analogous crimes transpired between March 2021 and September 2023, as revealed through a public records request. The Austin Police Department is actively seeking a woman accused of drugging multiple men and robbing them within the downtown Austin Entertainment District.

Downtown Austin, Texas photographed during daytime from the Pfluger Pedestrian Bridge.

Jouaienttoi/Wikimedia Commons

According to APD, the incidents targeted male victims who were possibly drugged, resulting in the theft of their credit cards and cellphones. Subsequently, the stolen cards and phones were employed to carry out over $75,000 in fraudulent purchases and transactions. The perpetrator utilized banking apps on the phones and engaged in physical purchases at various businesses using the stolen credit cards.


Both Atlanta Victims Express Concern Over Growing Trend in Crime

Zeanah and Brown, unaware of the New York incidents, express concern about the escalating trend of such crimes. 

A man obscuring his face with his hand. His arm rests at a right angle on a wooden table inside a home. He is looking out of a window.

Andrew Neel/Pexels

Zeanah emphasized the potential dangers, stating, “This has got to stop because they’re going to keep on doing it and they’re going to kill people. I should not be alive right now, quite frankly.”


Wall Street Journal Interviews Serial iPhone Thief

Joanna Stern from The Wall Street Journal conducted an interview with a convicted iPhone thief currently incarcerated in a Minnesota correctional facility. 

A woman sits behind a camera and some photography equipment.


During the interview, the thief revealed intricate details about his methods, including observations on how he would steal and gain unauthorized access to devices. This encompassed tactics such as discreetly observing individuals entering their passcodes and swiftly altering their Apple ID login information.


4 Individuals Charged in New York for Similar Crimes

In an unrelated case, New York City prosecutors recently charged four individuals accused of stealing credit cards and using stolen phones’ mobile payment apps.

A pile of multi-colored pills sits on a pink desk, with a glass of water out of focus in the background.

Karolina Grabowska/Pexels

The suspects are said to have made fraudulent luxury purchases exceeding $420,000. This follows a previous case involving eight men accused of drugging and robbing bar and nightclub attendees in New York City, resulting in seven deaths.


Rising Prevalence of iPhone Crimes

The rising prevalence of such crimes underscores the need for heightened security measures and public awareness. 

A close-up of caution tape running in front of escalators.

Raysonho/Wikimedia Commons

Zeanah and Brown’s experiences serve as cautionary tales, highlighting the urgent need for effective strategies to combat the increasing threat of phone-related robberies and fraud.