BENTON, Ark. (CAP) - Benton police and FBI agents are on the search for multiple suspects following the break-in and robbery of the Dollar Tag store on Main Street. Police say the heist netted a massive $37 in cash and merchandise.
"How am I supposed to recover from this?" asked store owner Murry Lipinski. "With my $50 deductible, that makes this a total loss. A total loss!"
Investigators say the thieves used a small amount of Semtex plastic explosive to blow a hole in the wall of the building and then managed to clean out the safe, loot the shelves, and make their getaway all before police could respond to the store's alarm.
"This is organized crime at its top level. This was planned and executed with military precision," said Benton Police Chief Gary Sipes. "This is a terrifying crime committed by professional and organized gangsters."
In fact, FBI agents joined the investigation because this robbery marked the fifth time in just six weeks that a Dollar Tag store was hit, and the first time the thieves crossed state lines. The Benton robbery is by far the largest so far, almost double the amount stolen from the Dollar Tag in Bethany, Okla. last month.
Surveillance tape from the store showed at least four people entering the building, with two of them then spray-painting the security cameras and blocking any further view. Investigators say of the four, three are men and one is believed to be a woman.
Anyone with information about the robbery is asked to call the Benton Police Department. No reward is being offered at this time, but witness protection is available if an eye-witness report leads to an arrest.
- CAP News Staff