Increase in Business Burglaries

September 8, 2009 8:04:53 PM PDT
Fresno Police say they've seen an increase in burglaries at local businesses. There have been almost forty in the last five weeks.The stores range from an upscale kids boutique in northeast Fresno to a small salon. There, thieves stole everything from hair dryers to clippers. "We got broken into twice in 24 hours. They took our credit card machines, our telephones, $1,500 worth of product," said Valerie Fena with Men U Salon. In both of those instances and in several others, thieves used river rocks to break glass and get inside.

They also used a rock to break into the Target at Shields and First. Police say they want to question two men spotted in surveillance video leaving the store the night before the burglary because they left in the same car used during the crime.

Police also have surveillance video from a smoke shop in Central Fresno. Thieves kicked the door to get inside. In the video, someone is seen running out the business with his arms full of stuff before he gets into a waiting car and speeds away.

Kevin's Garden Supply also had its windows and doors smashed. It was hit twice in two weeks and police want to question 25 year old Jason Berry about those break-ins. The owner didn't want to show his face on camera but told Action News he installed burglar bars and is in the process of installing surveillance cameras.

The owner of Men U salon in northeast Fresno may be making the biggest change of all. After only two months at the location, she's packing up and moving elsewhere. "It's the timing. We have to go. We want our clients to be comfortable, we want to be comfortable. We just can't be here anymore," said Fena.

Businesses hit since August first also include a doctor's office and pizza places. Police don't think they're all necessarily related but might be the work of several different groups of bandits.

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