Correction: A previous version of this story included an incorrect reference to the date of the incident and the specific crime committed. It was a burglary on Saturday.
AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) — After a bold burglary at an Aurora liquor store was followed by another burglary hours later, the Problem Solvers have questions about why the scene was not secured.
The first thieves crashed an SUV into the store, G & E Wine and Spirits, taking money, an ATM and even a Bitcoin machine. Aurora’s mayor visited the scene on Monday.
“This is a shock,” Mayor Mike Coffman said, frustrated and even calling out Democratic Gov. Jared Polis.
“I think that the state legislature and our governor have to wake up, have to wake up. We can only do so much at the municipal level,” Coffman said.
“A lot of these vehicles are stolen [and] we know they were used in other crimes, and this is just an example of it,” he claimed.
Colorado leads the country in auto theft
The Aurora Police Department confirmed that Saturday morning’s burglary is connected to one from hours earlier. In both cases, APD got there in less than five minutes. But store owners told FOX31 that thieves hit the business a second time later that morning.
The mayor was asked on Monday if police should have secured the initial crime scene.
“I’ve not had an opportunity to talk to the Aurora Police Department yet,” he said.
This is the latest example in a state that leads the country in car thefts. The city is also seeing an uptick in this type of crime as well, according to the FOX31 Data Desk.
“We’ve got to be tougher on crime, we’ve got to be tougher on criminals and if we don’t, we’re just inviting more of the same. This is going to be just normal. This should never be normal,” Coffman said.
If the mayor gets his way, franchised convenience stores and businesses, some of which are required to stay open 24 hours, will no longer have to. It’s a move he says will keep employees and store owners safe.
Aurora Police releases statement
Here’s what APD said in a statement when FOX31 asked about response times and securing the liquor store following the initial hit:
On October 8th, 2022 at 2:05 am Aurora911 received calls about a burglary in progress at 18680 East Iliff Avenue, G & E Liquors. Officers were dispatched at 2:07 a.m. At 2:08 a.m. Aurora911 received a call from the alarm company regarding the burglary. Officer arrived on scene at 2:10 a.m. and they observed a silver Hummer H2 in the area that was described by the store owner as being involved. Officers stopped the Hummer H2, but the suspects ran on foot. Officers checked the area but were unable to locate the suspects at that time.
Through their initial investigation, officers were able to connect this burglary to a burglary at 541 N. Sable Blvd that occurred at 00:37 a.m. Officers were dispatched at 00:39 a.m. and arrived at 00:41 a.m. to find the front door broken out.
In both cases, the burglars targeted the ATM machines in the business. There is one other vehicle that was involved but due to pending investigative steps, we are not releasing any information about that vehicle.
The Hummer was stolen from Denver on October 7th around 7 p.m. in the evening and has been towed to be processed for any possible evidence. The scene was processed for evidence and the case is open and ongoing. No suspects have been arrested.
We understand there is concern that officers did not remain on scene or assist with boarding up the business. It is not normal protocol for officers to secure private businesses or homes after a burglary has occurred. During the two hour time period from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. on October 8th, Aurora Police Department Officers were dispatched to and handled over 20 calls for service. These included multiple hit and run accidents, allegations of sexual assault, a missing person report, a person threatening suicide, and multiple reports of different suspicious occurrences called in by community members.
However, we also understand this frustrating ordeal greatly impacts both business owners.Aurora Police Department