In spate of burglaries on Oahu over the last week, shops prove easy targets
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - According to Honolulu police data, there have been 65 burglaries across Oahu in the last seven days.
Not all were businesses, but officials say shops often make easy targets.
HPD investigated at least two break-ins at Honolulu businesses overnight.
The first one happened just after 10 p.m. at Pancakes and Waffles in the Waimalu Shopping Plaza. Sources say the thief used a pry bar to break in the back door.
The suspect got away with a safe.
In Aina Haina, thieves shattered the front door at the Longs Drug Store in Aina Haina. Sources said the suspects cracked open multiple cash registers and attempted to bust the store’s ATM machine.
“First and foremost businesses need to understand this is happening,” said Sgt. Chris Kim.
The Honolulu Crimestoppers coordinator says many burglary cases often involve stolen vehicles or stolen license plates.
“They’re basically going out shopping. Or shopping the illegal way ― and what I mean by that is they’re just kind of casing out different areas,” Kim said. “And if they see a particular business that isn’t well protected or is kind of out of sight from the public oftentimes those will be targeted.”
On Nov. 8, suspects armed with an ax broke into a Keeaumoku eatery and attempted to bust open their ATM machine. When that didn’t work, they chained it to a truck and ripped it from the restaurant.
In a separate case, surveillance cameras captured three thieves breaking into a cafe inside Ala Moana Center on Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
“Right now, we’re running six locations. This Ala Moana location was I thought one of the most secure ones. Protected by a mall. A bunch of security guards always patrolling,” said Takaya Osada, vice president of Musubi Cafe Iyasume.
He said the thieves cracked a lockbox to get the key and got away with his safe.
The same thieves also hit his neighbors, he said. “Our business and then two tenants next to each other. So three businesses they broke into,” Osada said.
Kim says businesses owners should do a security analysis of their shop.
“We encourage you as a business owner to do a complete walk-around and see what are the weak points,” he said. ”What areas can entry be made through. You got to kind of think out of the box because that’s what these criminals are doing.”
Kim suggests investing in an alarm system .and surveillance cameras.
“Something as simple as setting up motion sensor lights,” he added. “Building rapport with neighboring businesses. Basically looking out for each other.”
Kim also said if you have an ATM inside your business or on your property, it should be bolted down. If you have information on the suspects in any of those cases, call Honolulu Crimestoppers 955-8300.
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