Burglars caught on camera attempting to steal from University City dispensary
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - Video surveillance from Star Buds Dispensary in University City captures four suspects caught on video smashing through the front door’s windows of the business.
“I think there’s some good that’s going to come out of the quality of video that we have of them,” said Co-Owner Chris Chesley. “I’m thinking a few hundred dollars [we lost] maybe a couple of hundred dollars for the graphics that we had on it.”
Chesley tells News 4 that is the extent of their losses, and he credits their beefed-up security system in deterring these thieves from getting into their merchandise.
“Everyone has upgraded their security. I think at this point you’d be better off trying to rob a bank than a dispensary,” said Chesley.
It is a theme among dispensaries across the state. Chesley says they all collaborate with one another, as well as the Department of Health and Human Services on how to tighten security. This comes after a series of dispensary break-ins in the Metro last summer.
“The state has set minimum security standards for the types of alarm systems that we use, the types of video cameras that we use, [and] how long we have video storage,” said Chesley. “We can go back months of every single second.”
It’s video, like the surveillance they shared with News 4, that also shows how other security measures prevented thieves from getting past their lobby and into the merchandise room: from bulletproof glass at the reception window to hardened security at the doors.
“Security doors, we have security latches,” he said. “We have everything that you put into a dispensary is based around security.”
University Police say the incident at Starbuds happened around 2 a.m. on Friday. The suspects fled Star Buds in a stolen white four door sedan, which they believe could be a KIA Forte. It was last seen traveling at a high speed eastbound on Olive Blvd.
Police say the suspects could also be responsible for another break-in at a vape and head shop called Mr. Nice Guy in the 8000 block of Olive.
A manager at the shop confirmed with News 4 they were impacted by an overnight break-in but declined to provide more details.
Chelsey hopes this incident is a wake up call to would be thieves that dispensaries take safety and security seriously
“People are going to learn that just because they are getting product in other states, it’s not going to happen in Missouri,” he said.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the University City Police Department at 314-725-2211, Ext. 8010 or Crime Stoppers at 866-371-TIPS.
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