Police Investigating String Of Smash And Grab Burglaries

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CENTRAL WEST END (KTVI) -  A Radio Shack became the latest target of a smash-and-grab burglary early Tuesday morning.  There has been a rash of these crimes in the metro area.

St. Louis Metropolitan Police reportedly rushed to Lindell Boulevard and North Sarah Street around 5:30 a.m.  An alarm sounded inside.  Officers did not find anything out of the ordinary in the front of the store, which is gated.  Instead, they found a gaping hole in the back of the store.

Our own Mazda Roadrunner Bobby Hughes was on the scene.  A viewer then found him and said the suspect vehicle was around the corner.

Police started looking at a Dodge Ram pickup with severe rear-end damage.  Someone parked it just two blocks to the north on Sarah Street and Westminster Place.  If this truck was used to smash in the back door of this store, we hear there were no electronics from radio shack or other merchandise inside.  Police may be looking for a second vehicle involved in the burglary.

The truck was reported missing out of Pekin, Illinois.

There was no immediate word on any suspects or injuries.  Not only was the back of the store severely damaged, the store lost power.

The owners of the building took stock of the damage, while store managers tried to find how much stock was missing.

Police say the criminals got away with laptops and flat screen televisions.

Police all over the metro area have been busy for several days as they investigate similar crimes.

A beauty supply shop in north city was hit Monday morning.  A service station in Cahokia and a computer store on Manchester were targeted recently.

Business owners are fed up and frustrated, they don’t know how they can protect themselves.  Dennis Gorg owns the Coffee Cartel and a tanning salon in the Central West end.  Smash and grab suspects hit his tanning business.  The damages cost more than the value of the stolen merchandize. Gorg said, “It’s just so brazen it’s just so crazy.”

Some business purchase security cameras or place obstacles in front of doors to block vehicles.  Many times they don’t work, the burglars find a way in.  Gorg said, “These people, they don’t care they just don’t care.”  He added, “Police do what they can but they can’t be everywhere all the time and these crimes happen so fast, five minutes they’re in they’re out they’re done.”

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