Southeastern PA

Police investigate possible link between pair of Kmart break-ins

Similar 'smash-and-grab' burglaries happened in Lower Pottsgrove, Ephrata

Police investigate possible link between Kmart break-ins

LOWER POTTSGROVE TWP., Pa. - A brazen burglar tried to hide his face, but he couldn't hide from surveillance cameras as he smashed into a Kmart store and made off with thousands of dollars in jewelry.

The smash-and-grab style burglary happened around 2 a.m. Thursday at the Kmart in the 2200 block of E. High St. in Lower Pottsgrove Twp., Montgomery Co.

The burglar, who was seen with a "Scream" style white Halloween mask over his face, was in and out of the store in under eight minutes. He busted his way through the garden center's glass door and headed straight for the jewelry display cases, said police.

In the video, he could be seen wearing a dark colored hooded sweatshirt and gloves, and he was carrying a pink or red colored satchel with a small club or bat.

"He targets that jewelry area, quickly gathers up the merchandise and exits the store," said Chief Mike Foltz, Lower Pottsgrove Twp. Police Dept.

Shards of glass were still on the ground outside the garden center door where he got in, and tape and plastic bags covered the shattered jewelry cases.

"Oh my God. I can't believe somebody would do something like that. It's such a nice area," said Angela Young, who was shopping at the store.

"It's surprising that it's so close to home. It's kind of scary, actually," said Jen Geisinger, who shops at the Kmart frequently.

A similar smash-and-grab happened last month at the Kmart in Ephrata Twp., Lancaster Co. A man came in the same way and was caught on camera. He smashed the jewelry display cases and stole nearly $42,000 in jewelry, said police.

Investigators did not release a specific value of jewelry stolen in Thursday's burglary, but it was a similar amount to the other theft, said police.

Now, police are investigating if the burglaries are connected. They also believe another person is involved, possibly a getaway driver.

"We're asking for the public's help to try and identify who those actors are so hopefully we can get a lead and make an arrest in this case," said Foltz.

At this time police said they do not have any leads besides the surveillance video. If you have any information you are asked to call police.

Anyone with information about the most recent burglary is asked to call Lower Pottsgrove police at 610-326-1508.

Tips about the theft in Ephrata Township can be given to Ephrata police by calling 717-738-9200.

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