Phoenixville police track smash-and-grab burglar

PHOENIXVILLE, Pa. - December 2, 2011

Call him persistent.

The burglar tried several times to smash the glass front door of the Metro PCS on Bridge Street. His weapon? A rock. And when that didn't work, he decided to smash a nearby window.

"He moves in and out fairly quickly, either going through the cash register if it's open or stealing it if it's locked," said Sergeant Joseph Nemic of the Phoenixville Police.

Surveillance video shows the bandit struggling with a cash register. When it doesn't open, he takes the whole thing. Nemic says about an hour before this smash-and-grab burglary on November 10th, the suspect broke into four businesses in a strip mall on Starr Street, including the Hair Cuttery.

"I just don't understand what people are after or why," said Hair Cuttery employee Pam Morris. "I don't know if they want revenge against someone. It's just terrible."

"It's a little scary," said Fay Copenhafer, a Hair Cuttery customer, "especially when you don't know why it's happening."

Police say the suspect hasn't taken any merchandise, only cash. And they believe he may be connected to similar smash-and-grab burglaries in East Pikeland, King of Prussia and Trappe, Pa.

Police want you to take a close look at the suspect. He has a distinctive hooded jacket with dark stripes down the sleeves.

"He is certainly a nuisance to the business owners and taxing the resources of the police department," said Nemic. "The investigation has reached the point where we could use the public's help in identifying the individual."

In addition to the surveillance video, police have recovered some physical evidence. It is currently being analyzed.

If think you have seen the suspect or have additional information about any of the burglaries, you are asked to contact Phoenixville Police Detective Sgt. Joe Nemic at 610-933-1180 ext. 815 or jnemic@phoenixville.org.

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