301.519.9237 exdirector@nesaus.org

6.14.23 – DES MOINES, Iowa (KCCI)

Burglars took the doors off the hinges to target two businesses in Iowa. The break-ins were caught on camera. “The hinges were out. And the door was cracked open like that,” coffee shop owner Deep Paudel said.

Paudel said he got the shock of his life when he arrived at his shop on Monday morning. Around midnight, someone took apart the outside hinges on his front door, walked in to his shop and stole $500.

“They have the guts to do that on a busy traffic road like this. I was surprised,” Paudel said.

He said he was even more surprised when he looked at what his security cameras recorded. The suspect appears to be a masked woman.

In the video she is seen coming in the door, heading straight to the cash box and grabbing the money before running for the back door. It was over in seconds.

“And surprisingly they knew where the money was,” Paudel said.

The burglary at Paudel’s wasn’t the only one. Similar burglaries have been reported in the area, including at the hair salon next door.

“The hinges on the other side popped open and the hinges were on the floor,” the salon owner, Dave VanderEcken, said.

The burglar’s point of entry was not the only similar trait between the one at VanderEcken’s and the one at Paudel’s. Both burglars went right to the money.

“And of course, all the money was gone, and I walked in and found it just like this,” VanderEcken said.

The salon has new security cameras and an alarm system. The coffee shop will have a new alarm system, too. Both have new burglar-proof door hinges.

Paudel had a message for the burglars.

“I was upset, so many emotions. Yes, I was sad because I lost money,” Paudel said. “But at the same time, why don’t you just get a job?”

It is a sentiment shared by both shop owners.

“Just be nice to everybody. Get a job like everybody else. We’re not here to support you,” VanderEcken said. “We work hard for what we get, and we want to keep it ourselves.”