Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Dual burglaries

July 28, 2009 7:31 PM
CALHOUN COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Two West Michigan businesses hit hard by burglars are now left to try and pick up the pieces.

Investigators in Calhoun County are looking into robberies at a car dealership in Marshall Township, and an auto parts store in Tekonsha where thousands of dollars worth of merchandise was stolen.

Business owners are still figuring ouit what was stolen this weekend from two robberies that occurred in Calhoun County.

As of right now the figures are staggering. We're talking about over $250,000 stolen from two businesses during this recent crime spree.

"They completely devastated every tool in our shop," said the Courtesy Car and Truck owner, Jim Swain.

He figures late Saturday afternoon the thieves walked in to his business after hours and literally cleaned him out. They got away with tools, paint brushes, hammers, and even raiding an assortment of batteries. While the shelves sit empty so does a nearby parking space. Officials believe the culprits loaded the company car with stolen goods and used it as a get a way vehicle. It was later found burnt to a crisp in Detroit.

"Its hard to believe that a little town of 900 people and someone from Detroit would come down and invade us," said Swain.

Just a few weeks earlier he may have conducted business with the thieves. Swain says he thinks they where in the area looking around to see what businesses may lack security. He says they travelled some 60 miles just to come to his shop and that raised some red flags.

"It stuck out like a soar thumb. A person doesn't need to travel that far to have tires balanced. I think we have some blind spots and they figured that out," said Swain.

But the crime spree doesn't stop there. About ten miles up the road a similar situation at Bosear Ford in Marshall.

Nearly $100,000 of tools were stolen out of the service garage and a Ford Fusion driven right off the lot. Just a short time ago, that car was also found in the Motor City, charred.

Captain Matt Saxton of the Calhoun County Sheriff's Department tells Newschannel 3 both businesses were just a stone's throw away from the interstate and their locations may have made them easy targets.

"Some of the incidents that we know have been close to the state truck lines or highways," said Captain Saxton.