Suspected thieves ransack south side tint shop, even taking store’s ‘open’ sign

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An auto tint shop owner on the south side said a group of thieves cleaned him out early this morning, taking tens of thousands of dollars-worth in equipment.

He has the surveillance video to prove it, with one man even walking away with the store’s open sign. The owner said the burglary at Circle City Tint along South Keystone Avenue started around midnight and lasted for at least five hours.

The three suspected thieves came into the shop by knocking an air conditioning unit out of the garage door and climbing through. A sign above said the building had working security cameras.

“I came inside and everything was ransacked. Everything was on the floor,” said Tim Hayes, the owner of Circle City Tint, “They took everything.”

Hayes wound back his security cameras on Friday morning once he got to work and realized he’d been hit.

He said the suspected crooks went straight to a detailing area, where there aren’t cameras, and spent hours there, snatching buffers, drills, tools, and other items.

“We had our big air compressor here that we deal with,” he said, “They took the machines that we use to extract carpets.”

The men get picked up on the shop’s surveillance cameras around 5 a.m. on Friday, when they lift a weed eater and leaf blower off a trailer. They also made their way to the office, stealing cell phones and first-aid kits as they rifled through the counter, but they left the cash register intact.

One man ripped a television off the wall and even got the store’s open sign.

Hayes said the guys took boxes of window film, heat guns, and lights out of their mobile unit that was in the garage.

“When I came in, the trunk was open, the passenger door was open, and the lights were flashing,” he said.

He showed the video to another employee, who said he thinks they are the same men that came in for a job quote late Thursday afternoon, sticking around for five to ten minutes. He thinks they may have been scoping out the place.

“I really just can’t figure out why it happened,” he said, “I don’t understand why people have to steal for a living.”

He tells us he’s in the process of opening a location on the city’s north side, and this theft may put a hold on that because in shopping for new insurance, he cancelled the existing policy.

Now he’s not sure what’s next.

“It’s tough. It’s kind of hard to open a second location when this one doesn’t have anything anymore,” he said, “Not sure where we’re going to go from here.”

Hayes filed a police report and IMPD is investigating the case.

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