LAWTON, Okla._A couple of business owners in southwest Lawton are fed-up after becoming a repeat target for vandals. But now they're also hopeful because the most recent crime was caught on tape.
Surveillance cameras were rolling Wednesday morning when someone smashed out The Convenience Store's front window and made off with hundreds of dollars worth of tobacco. And Tuesday, just the across the street, the owner of RV Connection says his window was also smashed out. Even worse, both owners say this is the second time it's happened in just two weeks.
The owner of The Convenience Store, unfortunately, is used to these types of incidents in the time he has been there but he says it had really quieted down recently. The owner of RV Connection however, hasn't had to handle a situation like this over the 10 years he's been there until just this month.
Paul Pinchback said two weeks ago, a thief used a rock to break the front window, and then stole $450 from the register. Just two days ago, the same window was broken out but fortunately not the same result, because the register had already been cleaned out with the money in a safe. Pinchback says the surveillance video showed no more than a figure but believes the man will still get caught.
"I would just encourage the community to be on the look out and to notify the law enforcement, because we do have good patrol officers in this area doing their job, but we all need to help," said Pinchback.
Afzal, the owner of The Convenience Store, which is across the street, says the past two weeks have cost him between $1,200 and $1,600 with merchandise and repairs combined, but that is not the only damage.
"It's not healthy for the society as well, and bringing a bad name to the neighborhood," said Afzal.
But the loss of money hasn't put a loss of faith in the authorities working to catch the criminals.
"Police are very active. They are smart people. They are professional. They will get this information, and collect more information and I have no doubt they can get the person," said Afzal.
Lawton police were still collecting information and were unable to comment on the case as of now. Detectives did meet with the owners of both businesses and were looking over the surveillance footage.
Former Cameron University professor Tony Allison is one of ten leaders to be inducted into The Oklahoma Higher Education Heritage Society Higher Education Hall of Fame. Tony M. Allison founded the debate and forensics program at the university and coached its teams to several national championships during his years at Cameron University.