Brazen ATM theft at bingo hall in Concord

August 10, 2011 3:54:56 PM PDT
Police have recovered a pickup truck used to smash through the plate-glass window of a Concord bingo hall early this morning and steal an ATM, but no suspects have been identified, Concord police Lt. Steve Dyer said.

At about 3 a.m., two suspects drove the truck through the front windows of the Blue Devils Bingo Hall at 4065 Nelson Ave.

The pair then loaded an ATM into the back of the pickup and drove off, Dyer said.

The break-in activated the business' alarm system, and a security guard notified police, but the suspects were gone by the time they arrived, Dyer said.

California Highway Patrol officers found the pickup truck, which had been reported stolen in June, at about 6 a.m. abandoned in a remote area on Alhambra Valley Road.

The ATM was in the back of the truck but had been emptied, Dyer said.

Bret Rios, operations director for Blue Devil Performing Arts, the non-profit organization that runs the bingo hall, said the break-in caused between $8,000 and $10,000 in damage to the building.

The ATM itself was worth about $8,000 and had between $5,000 and $6,000 in cash inside, Rios said.

"It was gutsy, that's for sure," Rios said of the break-in. "Clearly they had to have known the ATM was there, so they'd been in the building before."

He said the crime was caught on the business' surveillance video, which they have given to police.

Despite the mess, Rios said the hall is still planning to run bingo tonight and is working on cleaning up the mess and building a temporary wall where the truck went through the window.

Revenue from the bingo games is used to support youth organizations, Rios said.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Detective Greg Mahan at (925) 603-5814. People who wish to remain anonymous can call the Police Department's tip line at (925) 603-5836.

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