FRESNO, California (KGPE) – A brazen burglary at a gas station in Hanford is the latest in a string of similar incidents. The suspects are seen on camera wearing masks and hoodies, filling a pair of bins with thousands of dollars worth of cigarettes.
The two are also suspected in at least six other smash-and-grab incidents in Fresno County and Kings County – but with no clear image of the thieves’ faces, police are asking for the public’s help to track them down.
Surveillance video from Jan. 7 shows a burglary at a Shell gas station on Mount Whitney Avenue in Riverdale. On Jan. 13, a Chevron on 11th Avenue in Hanford was hit.
In both videos, the thieves can be seen gathering cigarette packs into bins and driving off. Police saying they believe the same people were involved in three other burglaries in Hanford over a span of three weeks.
“They’ll slip up eventually because they’re having a lot of success right now, so they’re going to want to keep this thing going,” said Fresno County Sheriff’s Office’s Tony Botti. “Greed always gets somebody caught.”
The products stolen in the four Hanford burglaries add up to thousands of dollars.
“People are really targeting cigarettes over the last few years as the prices have just skyrocketed.”
Botti says stolen cigarettes are often sold online and buyers should be on the lookout for anything suspicious.
“Listen to what’s going on on the street, see what’s popping up online. You’ll be able to connect the dots of if something’s being sold that might be related to one of these cases.”
Police also believe the thieves have been using different cars in these burglaries: one is a dark grey car, possibly a Nissan, and another is a Chrysler 300m.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the police.