According to Michael Wilson of The New York Times, Starbucks coffee shops are a prime location for pickpockets and thieves, because the settings are full of people who are generally at ease with their work or conversation with tunes playing in the background.
I imagine that many of us academics as well as our students spend a considerable amount of time at Starbucks or similar public places that are conducive to a relaxing work environment. We all need however to remember that these places are public, and therefore, they provide no guarantee of protection for our belongings.
Whether you are in a Starbucks or any other public place such as a library, you should always guard your things with care. If you are going to get another cup of joe or if you need to find a book on the shelf, I would recommend that you take your things with you. Merely covering your wallet or laptop with your jacket will not prevent your things from being taken.
Be careful out there, enjoy your coffee and semester-end studies, but please take care of your precious belongings, too.