Business owners frustrated by string of break-ins - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Business owners frustrated by string of break-ins

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

Business owners on Cape Girardeau said they're worried for other businesses in the area that haven't been hit yet.

Thieves have hit four businesses along Independence Street in Cape Girardeau.

Someone broke into Whiskey River a few weeks ago, hit Rhymer's On the Plaza Wednesday morning, stole from Trish's Lounge Thursday morning, and attempted to break in to Raben Tire Thursday morning.

"I'm kind of shocked by how brazen somebody would be to do this, the night after you would hit me, you want to go across the street," said Will Rhymer, the owner of Rhymer's On the Plaza.

"I came in to drop off some keys about 9 o'clock, and I noticed the window was broke out front, and anyway I called the police," said Terry Eakers, a bartender at Trish's Lounge. "It really shocked me to see all the damage that we had."

Eakers said there was damage to the machines, a cash register, the safe, windows, and locked doors.

"I came in and seen all the damage to the machines, and they tried to tear our safe open which they didn't do, and just any place they thought where there was money, they tried to get into it," said Eakers. "We've got a lot of damage to the structure, to the back door, they tried to get into, which they weren't able to do that, and then some of the other damage to other locked doors."

He said it will be a big financial loss for them.

"It's costly, it's costing us, we're going to have to be shut down today, plus the cost of trying to repair the damage, and you know it's just going to take awhile," said Eakers.

He said it seems the thief or thieves came prepared.

"Everything was locked up good and tight, and I guess just last resort they went through the front window there, and I didn't think anybody would try to get through one of those windows but apparently they did, and they came prepared with tools to tear everything open the way they did," said Eakers.

Will Rhymer is the owner of Rhymer's On the Plaza, and said he got an alert on his phone when someone shattered the glass on one of the business's doors.

"Whenever I came in and saw the bar in such disarray, the side glass kicked open, I'm thinking you know, why would somebody do this?" said Rhymer.

He said the police were there within just a few minutes, so the thief didn't have very long inside, but still managed to steal some money and create a mess.

"Knowing somebody's in your place of business when you're not there, it kind of gets under your skin a little bit," said Rhymer.

"You feel very violated, when this happens to you," said Betty Hendrickson, an owner of Whiskey River.

Whiskey River was the first of the businesses hit in the string.

"It's just hard to believe, we're a pretty small community, and we thought at least we warn some of the other bars, you know that maybe it wouldn't happen to them," said Hendrickson.

It's a big hit during the holiday season.

"It kind of wakes you up when you come in and see something like this, how low people can get," said Eakers.

"We can't claim it on insurance because they don't cover money missing, they cover damages and there's not enough damages to claim, so it's just money out of our pockets, and right here at the holidays, it's rough on us just like it is everybody else," said Hendrickson.

"It's actually kind of pulling it right out of our pocket, they're not robbing an insurance company, they're not getting their money from them, we're not getting recouped whatsoever from our insurance money," said Rhymer.

Some of the places have security cameras, like Rhymer's, but the business owners say they want to step up security a little more.

"You know it wasn't something I expected here, but with everything else that's been going on, we really got to do a lot more secure," said Eakers.

Hendrickson said they're going to install bars on the windows, and an alarm system.

They said they just want police to catch the thief or thieves, so the break-ins will stop.

"With everybody else being hit like they have been here lately, you know we hope we catch these people, and you know stop this," said Eakers.

"The other bars has had that, it hasn't stopped him, so I'm just hoping the cops can get something on him that will, so they can catch him, so it doesn't keep happening," said Hendrickson.

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