Beer, cigs snagged in distributor robbery

<div class="meta image-caption"><div class="origin-logo origin-image wpvi"><span>WPVI</span></div><span class="caption-text">Police are searching for a grey graffiti-covered van with double rear doors they think is connected to a string of early morning vandalism cases in Port Richmond and Kensington.</span></div>
September 14, 2008 3:51:07 PM PDT
Police are searching for a grey graffiti-covered van with double rear doors they think is connected to a string of early morning vandalism cases in Port Richmond and Kensington. Sources tell Action News that sometime between 5:00 and 6:00 this morning the van ran into 3 different beer distributors.

First, the thieves came through a locked 8-foot fence topped with barbed wire, mangling it as they crashed past it. Then it was on to the building that houses Camiel Beer Distributors on the 2600 block of Aramingo Avenue in Kensington. A security tape from a nearby store shows a partial view of a van blasting through the metal garage door.

"They ran the vehicle through the door and into the building and then they had a hard time, it looks like, backing out. That's why there's so much damage to the door," Ed Weise, the store owner's friend, said.

Over 100 cartons of cigarettes and an unknown amount of beer were taken from Camiel Distributors The vandals also smashed a lottery machine and stole an unknown number of lottery tickets.

At some point, police say the thieves attempted to break into two other beer distributors in Port Richmond, one 8 blocks away on Aramingo and another on East Tioga. They damaged the doors, but didn't get in.

Store owners had to hustle to get this place cleaned up and open for business. Today is a big day for beer sales and so is tomorrow.

"Monday Night Football, so it'll be busy today. Plus, all the games today, so we have to open up," Bloomfield said.

While the damaged security door is dismantled and replaced, the owner of Camiel's says he'll have access to his security tape Monday and is hoping it will show a better view of the van and the suspects who broke into his store.

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