Wednesday August 14, 2013
Hutchinson Police are investigating more than three dozen burglaries in the last month and a half.
Since July, about 40 small businesses have been broken into near the downtown area of Hutchinson.
"(They're) not necessarily stealing large items, just basically going in and stealing minimal amounts of cash and causing more damage than anything they're gaining," said Detective Jamie Schoenhoff, Hutchinson Police.
Some businesses have been hit more than once.
An employee of Bornholdt Plantland said thieves caused hundreds of dollars in damage and took less than $50 in cash. The store owners have since added surveillance cameras and cleared out cash registers before they close.
"They work hard, very hard, so for somebody to come in and take something from them, it's horrible," said Char Swofford.
Other businesses have heightened their security by taking home equipment and even checking on their businesses at night.
"We're just trying to make our living," said David Demming, owner of Deming Studio. "We don't appreciate someone coming in, tearing things up."
Schoenhoff said more officers have been patrolling the streets during the evening hours.
Last week, a 21-year-old man was arrested and may be linked to a large portion of these burglaries. But since his arrest, four other businesses and the Hutchinson Zoo were hit.
If you have any information about these crimes, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.