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Suspects use construction equipment to target car wash, one of two similar incidents this month

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- The owner of a car wash on the Fillmore Street hill said that the people involved in taking property from his business recently -- by using stolen construction equipment -- may be the same suspects who committed a similar crime at another car wash Wednesday.

Courtesy: Don Johnson

Don Johnson, the latest victim, said that he received a call from his alarm company two weeks ago, that someone had broken into the business shortly before 6 a.m.

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"When I watched the surveillance video, I saw that two young, white males had taken a skid loader from a construction site up the street and used it to damage the vending machine and steal the token machine," he said. "Two police cars were at the scene when I arrived."

Johnson said that the machines were against an exterior wall that was damaged but has since been repaired.

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"They damaged the machines and the boiler," he said. "I have around $25,000 in damage. I take cash out of the machine every night, so there may have been maybe $50 in there. I can't believe they did all of this to get that little bit of money."

Johnson said that a water line was broken in the damage, requiring a Colorado Springs Utilities crew to shut the water off.

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"When one of the crew guys came out, he said he was familiar with that kind of repair because he had done a similar job the day before at another car wash," Johnson explained.

Courtesy: Joseph DeLorme

KRDO NewsChannel 13 is waiting for a response from police about the incident, as is the owner of a car wash near the intersection of 8th Street and Arcturus Drive where someone used a similar construction machine to steal a dollar change machine and cause damage Wednesday.

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"(It) most likely has not been assigned to a property crime detective at this time," police said in an email Friday.

Johnson's car wash has been closed since the incident and he plans to sell the property, adding that it's not the first time thieves have targeted his business.

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"I know it's a low-priority case and police are overworked and have more important things to investigate," he said. "It's just frustrating that no one knows who's doing this or is able to catch them. They keep doing it over and over again and police can't do anything about it."

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Scott Harrison

Scott is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Scott here.

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