New Southeast Fresno cell phone store hit by thief

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A thief went to great lengths to clean out a new cell phone store that was just about to open. (KFSN)

A thief went to great lengths to clean out a new cell phone store that was just about to open.

The business owner decided to replace the broken glass here, by just building a wall. Hola Mobile Phone store was set to open this week, but now thousands of dollars in merchandise has to be replaced.

In the video, you'll see still pictures showing the thief. It looks like he's wearing a space suit or painters clothes when he was cleaning out the shelves. Steven Guzman owns Hola Mobile Phones and says it happened at 3am Tuesday morning.

"The window was taken down," said Guzman. "They actually cut the bars, because there's bars inside. They cut the bars and they got it and got everything they could."

Monday morning Guzman came in to find the window partially shattered. He assumes the thief returned the next morning to finish the job.

"I have a surveillance video where he is covered," said Guzman. "He actually got cut, like there was some blood stains in there."

Other businesses in the strip mall have also been hit recently -- including a pharmacy that was cleaned out several times. Police say $30,000 in prescription drugs was taken during one of the break-ins. And 21-year-old Jonathan Rivera was arrested for one of the burglaries. Police found him in a car with a gun and thousands of dollars in stolen drugs. Fresno Police Lieutenant Jose Garza says surveillance video has been key in tracking down many of these thieves.

Lt. Jose Garza with the Fresno Police Department said, "We really recommend and promote that businesses get surveillance video cameras. We have, every time photographs are taken of those doing thefts in businesses, we post it."

The burglar at this mobile phone store got away with thousands in cell phones, speakers and other electronics. Even though he didn't leave fingerprints, instead, police collected his DNA. While detectives work to identify the latest burglar, Guzman is getting an alarm installed and putting up additional security cameras.

Guzman said, "We've gone through some tagging, which we cleaned up, but now that we got broken into it's a little more intimidating."

Police say many of the burglaries in the area have been solved. But business owners say the break-ins are expensive, frustrating and a constant problem.



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