Burglars 'Smash and Grab' During Sandy Outages

14 Route 22 businesses hit during night of Nov. 2 while power was out.

Opportunistic burglars took advantage of the power outage last week, smashing doors and windows to gain entry to 14 Route 22 businesses.

Most of the businesses were found to have doors smashed. Police discovered the burglaries after a signal from one location's alarm system was triggered by the power outage, and officers noticed neighboring businesses' doors were also smashed.

Among the businesses broken into were:

  • AB Futon—Reported finding chairs and furniture overturned, but nothing reported missing.
  • Lube Express—$327 in cash and change taken.
  • Taco Bell—The cash drawer from a register was taken.
  • ACS/Prudent Investors Planning—Nothing taken; damaged door valued at $1,200.
  • Child's Enrichment Center—40-inch flat screen TV and $90 cash taken.
  • Signs by Tomorrow—$200 cash, miscellaneous checks.
  • Eye Mart—$250 cash and eyeglass frames taken.
  • Leisure Fitness—cash drawer from register taken.
  • Bonefish Grill—Bar area ransacked; unknown if items taken.
  • Leslie Pool—Cash drawers containing about $8 in change taken.

Nothing was reported missing from Burger King or Subway, and the attempt to get into the Sonic Restaurant wasn't successful. 

Polcie also investigated a break-in at the Provident Savings Bank that occurred sometime between before 7:17 a.m. Nov. 5, when an employee discovered a rear window smashed and reported it to police.

Police said the intruders attempted to pry their way into the bank's vault, pulling some metal trim from around the doorway to the vault, as well as drywall on the wall.

Drawers and an office had been ransacked, and a safe was damaged with the knob and faceplate melted and scratched.

Nothing was known to have been taken in the break-in.

The Somerset County Forensic Unit was contacted to check the scene for evidence.  

P.K. November 09, 2012 at 01:50 AM
Where were the police? Didn't they realize what happens when the power goes out?
Kevin Keller November 09, 2012 at 12:09 PM
check the ivory towers
jerseyjim November 09, 2012 at 02:17 PM
They were probably busy dealing with the problems associated with a storm of this size; downed wires, downed trees, and residents in need of assistance. I wouldn't think guarding a closed, locked business would take priority over residents in distress.
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