Investigators search for man behind car wash burglaries
PRAIRIEVILLE - A thief, now cashing in quarters in Ascension Parish, could be responsible for similar crimes in East Baton Rouge and Livingston Parishes, according to investigators.
Deputies are looking into surveillance video that captured a suspect breaking into a self-serve car wash in Prairieville on Thursday by using a drill to break into the cash box. At least two other different parishes are also investigating similar thefts that happened over the last couple of weeks, and investigators say they believe they all have this subject in common.
"When you add these things up and we add all that's going on, we're talking thousands of dollars that these people are stealing," said Ascension Chief Deputy Tony Bacala. "So, its not a petty crime. It's a felony offense and people need to go to jail for it."
The owner of the car wash in Prairieville says the damages will cost him a pretty penny. Investigators say they're relying on tips to help solve these cases.
"It's somebody's property being stolen. You can look at it and say car wash burglary, but that is somebody's business," said Bacala. "It didn't just happen. Somebody is actually out there casing these places out."
It's unclear if this man is responsible for the break ins in surrounding parishes at this point in the investigation. Ascension Parish has seen three cases of this type of car wash break in, but it's unknown at this time exactly how many reports East Baton Rouge and Livingston Parishes are facing. Investigators from the three parishes are currently sharing information to help stop the crimes.
Investigators say the suspect was driving an older model Jaguar and believe the color to be either silver or white.
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