Over the past two months, more than a dozen Murfreesboro businesses have been the target of burglars stealing large quantities of cigarettes, police said.
In one of the break-ins, the thieves stole more than 100 cartons of cigarettes and an additional 110 single packs, the Murfreesboro Police Department said.
(The average carton contains 200 cigarettes. By that measurement, the store that lost more than 100 cartons would have lost more than 20,000 cigarettes.)
The break-ins have occurred at different times of the night. In most of the burglaries, a rock was used to break the glass on the front door to gain entry.
In March, the MPD reported burglaries happening at eight businesses in which suspects used crowbars to enter stores and steal cigarettes and other items.
When asked if the cases were connected, MPD Public Information Officer Larry Flowers said, “No connection has been made at this point. Detectives haven’t ruled anything out.”
According to MPD, the following businesses have been targeted over the past two months:
• 69 Vape N Smoke, 1627 NW Broad St.: On April 19 at about 12:36 a.m., two suspects threw a jack stand through the front glass door and entered the store. They took merchandise from a display case.
• Sami’s Market: 2975 S. Rutherford Blvd., Suite B: On May 10 at approximately 1:07 a.m., a male entered the business through the front door and took more than 100 cartons of cigarettes and an additional 110 single packs.
• Dollar General, 2011 SE Broad St.: On May 28 around 11:38 p.m., an unknown subject broke out the glass of the Dollar General and attempted to steal cigarettes but was unable to.
• A M Tobacco and Beer, 2075 Lascassas Pike, Suite A: On May 28 at approximately 11:49 p.m., video surveillance shows a black male throwing a rock through the glass front door and entering. The suspect stuffed 20 cartons of cigarettes into a dark-colored bag.
• Kwik Mart, 315 N. Front St.: On June 1 around 2:09 a.m., video showed a black male entering the business by tossing a large rock through the front glass door. The suspect grabbed several boxes of cigarettes, shoved them into a black duffle bag and ran out.
• South Church Street Market, 1411 S. Church St.: On June 5 at approximately 10:15 p.m., a rock was used to break the glass. An unknown suspect or suspects stole about 55 cartons of cigarettes.
• Dollar General, 2015 Mercury Blvd.: On June 9 at approximately 12:36 a.m., a suspect damaged the front glass door using a large rock and gained access. The suspect damaged a glass cigarette case before leaving. After reviewing the video, a manager noticed the suspect returned to the business at around 3:48 a.m., damaging another glass case before leaving. The suspect returned at 4 a.m. and stayed four minutes damaging other items.
• 96 Tobacco and Beer Depot, 2015 Lascassas Pike, Suite A: On June 11 around 3:01 a.m., a burglar broke a glass door, entered, stole cash, and 21 cartons of cigarettes and an addition 89 single packs of cigarettes.
• Kwik Sak Gas Station, 1630 Bradyville Pike: On June 17 around 2:02 a.m., a male shattered the front glass door using a large piece of concrete from a drainage culvert. Video shows the suspect going straight to the cigarettes and placing 30 cartons into a bag.
• Dollar General, 4412 Manchester Pike: On June 17 at around 2:32 a.m., officers discovered the back door unsecure and several packs of cigarettes missing from a cabinet as well as packs on the floor. The suspect seen on video appeared to be a white male.
• Dollar General, 2015 Mercury Blvd.: On June 21 around 12:15 a.m., a suspect used a large rock to break the glass of the front door. The suspect took cigarettes and a box that contained Subwoofer speakers. The suspect returned to the business around 3:15 a.m. and took a box containing a printer.
• Dollar General, 1707 Bradyville Pike: On June 23 at about 3:53 a.m., video shows a black male, matching the description of recent burglaries where cigarettes were stolen, gain access to the store by throwing a large rock through the glass door. The suspect used the same rock to break the cigarette display case and stole multiple packs of cigarettes.
Anyone with information about the suspects should call Crime Stoppers at 615-893-STOP (7867) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 pm.