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Five attempted ATM thefts in six days leave business owners across Baltimore prayerful they aren’t next

Posted at 5:08 PM, Nov 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-05 18:14:35-04

BALTIMORE — Is it even worth it? That's the question business owners are beginning to ask as they see business after business broken into by ATM thieves.

After the latest ATM theft attempt less than 24 hours after BPD Commissioner Michael Harrison addressed the matter, it shows it’s a situation police don't have an answer for at least not yet anyway.

They've hit Hampden, Fells Point, Security Square Mall, MECU, SECU, Walgreens and now a store on Harford Road seeming like another day, another clean up after thieves attempt to jack another ATM.

A 15-year store owner who chose not to go on camera is having second thoughts about housing an ATM taking notice of who and what they're attracting.

“Of course that’s a frustration. That's attention we are mentally not comfortable you know,” the store owner shared.

As reports inch up closer and closer to his front door, he's growing nervous that he could find himself behind the burglary bulls-eye as police struggle to find a solution to the problem...

“We just pray to God. That’s it for safety and security. If somethings going to happen, no one can stop it. we can pray that's how we can do it,” he said.

He says now having an ATM is seemingly posing more of a risk than reward.

The thieves who took out the entire entrance of Walgreens on York road earlier this week cost the store thousands in repairs.

RELATED: Walgreens store severely damaged during overnight ATM theft

This store owner has a much smaller building, an even smaller ATM balance, but just as much risk all for the sake of their customer's convenience along with a roughly 1 percent store profit from the usage fees.

WMAR-2 News asked the owner “Is it worth having the machine for the damage it could cause?”

“It doesn't work. It's better we remove the ATM let it go because I didn’t not see it but I heard from the customers that the Walgreens, they broke it badly so its going to cost thousands to fix it so even that much money is not in the ATM,” he replied.

BPD commissioner Michael Harrison says they're coordinating with other agencies to gather intelligence regarding these ATM thefts but in the meantime if anyone has any details on this particular theft or other ones contact police.

Baltimore County Police also responded to the recent incidents:

As Baltimore County detectives work to arrest those responsible for attempted ATM thefts in the area, the department is asking residents to remain vigilant in reporting suspicious activity by calling 911.

With specialized operational resources allocated to this investigation, patrol units continue focused enforcement in areas identified through the department’s Crime Strategies and Analysis Section.

In an effort to harden potential targets and prevent further attempted ATM thefts, commercial security surveys are being conducted by precinct Community Outreach Teams free of charge to business stakeholders.

As crime has no borders, the Baltimore County Police Department continues to meet and share information with regional partners who are investigating similar trends. Collectively, these community, business, and regional partnerships will yield a successful conclusion.