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Liquor store burglaries may be connected

By Jessica Reber, Web Producer, jreber@kwch.com
Pilar Pedraza, ppedraza@kwch.com
Published On: Dec 02 2013 03:32:32 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 05 2013 05:27:49 PM CST

Wichita Police are asking for help identifying burglars accused of breaking into a liquor store, and investigators say the suspects may be connected to a string of other thefts.

The surveillance photos were taken during a break-in at Crystal Lakes Liquor, 2437 West 53rd St N., Thanksgiving night.

Police said the men pried open a glass door and took several bottles of liquor.

The burglars were last seen driving a minivan with damage on the passenger side near the rear wheel.

Police believe the same men also hit two other Wichita liquor stores, stealing thousands of dollars worth of liquor.

Anyone with information is asked to call police.     

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A Wichita liquor store found itself fixing the locks Monday morning after thieves broke in overnight and took off with about $3,400 worth of alcohol.

The owners have already re-stocked the shelves, as much as they could, but there are still holes from the burglary.

"The front doors were pried open," said Lt. Doug Nolte, Wichita Police. "And close to $3,400 worth of liquor was taken."

Not the news Adam Syslunthrn and his parents were expecting in the middle of the night.

"It happened a little after midnight," said Syslunthrn. "It looks like they just broke the lock and came right in, grabbed about 40 bottles of liquor and scooted on out."

The speed makes the Syslunthrns think the thieves had done it before.

"How fast they did it, the efficiency, in and out in like five minutes. The call came in around 12:20 a.m., and the officers arrived five minutes later and they're already gone," said Syslunthrn. "That is fast. Like pros, pretty much."

The thieves got the more expensive alcohol, all from one spot, taking every size on the shelf, from vodka to cognac.

"I was talking to a crime scene investigator and he was thinking maybe it could've been two, three people that did it," said Syslunthrn.

The Syslunthrns are picking up the pieces the thieves left behind, making repairs and getting back to business, all while trying to understand what's happened.

"I mean we're hard workers, you know, we're just here to do... pretty much do our job and go home and not have to worry about security issues," said Syslunthrn.

The Syslunthrns are hoping sharing their story will bring in new leads and help police catch whoever did this.

Based on what happened, and how, the Syslunthrns think whoever hit them also burglarized another liquor store last week. Police tell Eyewitness News they're looking into the similarities but haven't linked the burglaries at this time.

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