The Denver Police Department was so frustrated with unsolved burglaries at marijuana businesses earlier this summer that it asked the public for help in identifying a group of suspects accused of a string of smash-and-grabs. Over two months later, the police are still looking for clues…and the burglaries continue.
The number of marijuana business burglaries in Denver hasn’t really spiked, with 118 attempted burglaries in 2018, only three more than in 2014, according to DPD data. And as of July, there have been only 43 reported incidents this year. But the reported robberies in 2019 “tend to involve” the same suspects driving stolen Jeep Liberties and Cherokees, according to the DPD’s public alert.
Westword spoke with a handful of local marijuana businesses about the attempted burglaries at their respective stores. One dispensary executive says that the Jeep burglars broke into the same south Denver location on three separate occasions this year, typically using a crowbar to enter the store before running off with whatever they could find.
“They seem to be young or amateur, because they just grab our live resin, or whatever they can find — which isn’t much — and run off with it. It’s not like we’re keeping any money in there at night,” he explains. “But it looks like the same people each time.”
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Although dispensaries are easy to locate, they’re not very fertile ground for thieves. Most pot shops lock up their inventory as well as their money at night, explains the founder of one of Denver’s larger dispensary chains. “If only the bad guys would realize that we safe-room all of our THC products, [then] it would save a lot of early-morning glass sweeping,” he says, adding that “the pros hit the grows, not dispensaries.”
Lieutenant Andrew Howard,