ST. LOUIS – Thieves have hit another round of restaurants and bars in the area, breaking into three businesses in the Grove and Soulard overnight.
For a third time in two weeks, small businesses are the victims of smash and grab.
“In a way, we’re in the cool kids club now,” said Tony Saputo, co-owner of Platypus Bar.
On Wednesday at around 4:30 a.m., three thieves break-in at The Island in Soulard, Taco Circus, and Platypus Bar in the Grove neighborhood.
“It’s a little alarming and kind of scary,” said Chelsea Brooks, a customer at Taco Circus.
The thieves smashed the front door of each business, stole minor items, little cash, and left thousands more in damage.
Taco Circus and The Island had their front doors replaced hours after the burglary.
“Restaurants are probably one of the few businesses with one of the lowest profit margins,” Saputo said. “So, it’s a little frustrating seeing kids probably from the same area that you grew up in, giving it back to you.”
At The Island, three young, masked thieves are caught on camera breaking into the business of 10 years, smashing the front door with a rock, and going straight for the cash registers and back office.
“They got a little bit of cash, and then you have to fix everything. They broke two doors and busted a door and a window,” said Jason Stump. owner of The Island.
Stump plans to install a deadbolt and better lighting to stop future thieves.
One of the thieves appears to be wearing the same sweatshirt as seen on security footage from the Friday break-in at Sports Zone Bevo.
St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department have confirmed that some of the break-ins from last week were connected, but are continuing to investigate.
“Things have got to change for the better,” Stump said.
Two more neighborhoods are cleaning up as the ones responsible are still not caught.
An investigation into these three strings of break-ins is ongoing.