Breaking into and entering homes and businesses is an all too common occurrence. In the U.S., two million homes, or one every 13 seconds, are burglarized each year. One-third of all burglaries are commercial property or businesses.
Totem Market— This week, a burglar used the cover of predawn darkness to enter two Sierra Drive businesses. On Monday, Feb. 6, at 5:40 a.m., one individual entered Totem Market and Gifts.
After bypassing the alarm, the suspect pried the front door to gain entry. After rifling several change boxes and the cash registers, the thief escaped with mostly petty cash, some blank checks, and a set of keys. The individual was recorded on a security camera in the front parking lot and inside the premises.
The burglar, who obscured his face with what looked like a bandana, apparently used a crow bar to gain entry through the front door and was inside the store for 15 to 20 minutes. Greg Lockhart, owner of the Totem, estimated the total loss and property damage to be in excess of $1,800.
On Tuesday, Tulare County Sheriff’s detectives notified Lockhart that a stolen vehicle had been recovered containing the Totem checkbook and the set of missing keys. No arrests have been made in the case but the stolen property will be returned to Lockhart.
River View Restaurant— Shortly after 6 a.m., the same individual was recorded by a River View security camera after he smashed his way through the restaurant’s kitchen door.
After prying the cash register’s empty drawers open, the burglar took a six-pack of beer and exited the premises. The River View’s owners estimated their property damage to be $1,000.
Apparently, the suspect spent some time parked in front of both establishments before and during the burglaries. Anyone who might have seen the parked car or have any information in the case is asked to call the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office at (559) 733-6218 or send anonymous information via text or email to TCSO@tipnow.com or by calling (559) 725-4194.