Thief caught on surveillance at 3 Surf Thru Car Wash

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Police are investigating a vending machine thief caught on surveillance video at three Surf Thru car wash locations across the Valley. (KFSN)

Police are investigating a vending machine thief caught on surveillance video at three Surf Thru car wash locations across the Valley.

All it took was 20 seconds for the suspect to break into this vending machine and take off with up to $500. That was Saturday morning in Tulare.

"We actually have a clear photo of his face. He actually looked up, exactly at the camera," said Gabriel Hernandez, Surf Thru Express Manager.

A couple hours later, it appears he attempted to strike again, at another company location in Clovis. The suspect, seeming to drive the same truck, with no license plate. Here, he gets a car wash then stays in the vacuum area for more than an hour.

"He was just scouting our location, looking around for what employees are here, what employees are doing, what customers are watching," said Hernandez.

There he was unsuccessful. But he was last month at a Fresno location on First and Nees. The suspect was also caught on surveillance cameras, but with a different vehicle.

Now, police from different agencies will work together to get him identified and see if he's connected to even more crimes.

"There's no doubt in my mind when you have this type of crime, there's other criminal activity connected. Whether they're stealing vehicles to get around to various cities, whether there's drugs involved. There's definitely more than just the misdemeanor theft," said Sgt. Michael Landon, Fresno Police.

Until he's found, the car wash company is also on the lookout, with a picture of the suspect at every location. Someone they recognized after the fact.

"He was right under our nose. We could've had him right then and there," said Hernandez. "I was more upset too because you know, we're here about helping the guest. So we're helping him out. Hey do you need tire shine, hey do you need our assistance with getting the bugs off. And he's over here breaking into our own equipment stealing our property."

Between the stolen cash and the damage to the vending machines the company said they're down about $2,000.

If you know anything about the man seen in the video, call the police.
Related Topics:
newstheftfresnofresno countyclovissurveillance videoClovisFresno
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