SUMMERDALE, Ala. (WALA) - Summerdale Police are trying to catch a suspect that broke into two used car dealerships Thursday night, October 24. The owner of Budget Auto and Truck Sales on Hwy. 59 said someone broke out a window sometime after 10 p.m. and rummaged through desks. They found nothing missing and speculate the burglar was looking for quick cash.
Next door at Elite Auto Sales, a back window was broken out and the burglar ripped a safe from a wall in a front office. Summerdale Police were back on the scene at Elite Friday looking for fingerprints or other evidence the thief may have left behind.
Police said between 10:00 and 10:30 Thursday night windows at Elite Auto and next door at Budget Auto and Truck Sales were broken out to gain entry to the offices. Alarms were set off, but the thief was still able to get out with what he came for.
Elite General Manager, Chris Skoglund arrived shortly after the break-in and saw where the suspect had ripped a safe off the wall.
“I had all my keys and titles in the safe and it would have been pretty messed up if they’d have got away with that you know, having to re-key all the cars on the lot, but we learned a lesson,” Skoglund said.
Skoglund said the burglar heaved the safe over a fence at the back of the business and that’s when an employee at Budget heard the commotion and scared the suspect off.
“I guess when he threw the safe over the fence, I guess the keys were rattling inside of it and that’s when he come around and kind of said something to the guy,” Skoglund explained. “He dropped the safe and took off running down the road.”
Skoglund didn’t know at the time that Budget had been hit too. There, they have a window to replace too, but nothing was taken. Their security cameras did get video of the suspect though. The surveillance footage shows the hooded suspect crawl along the floor and search through desks for anything of value.
Summerdale Police believe the suspect’s vehicle to be a late model, silver, four door sedan…possibly a Mercury Marquise or Ford Crown Victoria. Police need help identifying the suspect and want to hear from you if you were in the area last night.
“If they may have seen anything suspicious…certain noises. Apparently the windows were broken out with a crowbar…anything at all,” said Summerdale Police Chief, James “Jimmy” Davis.
If you saw anything suspicious in that area Thursday night or in you recognize anything from the videos, you’re asked to call Summerdale Police at (251) 974-4010. If caught, the suspect will face two counts of burglary third degree.
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