A few downtown merchants in Golden have experienced thefts in the last two weeks including the Red Wagon, the Silver Horse and Miners Alley Playhouse, according to incident reports at the Golden Police Department.
All three thefts happened within a few days of each other.
“We’ve been hit by shoplifters twice in the last week,” Susan Lusk, owner of the Red Wagon said. “We’ve never had problems.”
Lusk reported clothing items stolen, she estimates to be about two weeks ago, with more clothing stolen on Sept. 15, along with a wallet that was stolen from a worker’s purse that was in the back room of the store.
“They’re very bold,” Lusk said.
The Silver Horse contacted Golden police Sept. 10 in regards to thefts of handmade necklaces and rings valued at $573. Tonia Carroll, owner of the Silver Horse, reported to Officer Beck that she had been working on the second level of the store, when she saw the suspect and made eye contact with him. Minutes later after moving her way to the first floor, she discovered the suspect had left, and jewelry was missing from the display holder on top of the jewelry counter. The holder was supposed to have 10 handmade beaded necklaces on it but the holder was empty. A ring box missing five metal rings with gems was near the missing necklaces.
Miners Alley Playhouse was a victim of theft two days after the Silver Horse incident on Sept. 13. Officer Skigen arrived at the playhouse where a locked metal cash box containing $100 in cash was stolen. In the box were keys to the Miners Alley unit, and owners have since changed the locks to their doors. Credit card receipts, and two credit cards left behind by patrons were also in the metal box. Len Matheo, executive director, Jonathan Scott-McKean, technical director and Brenda Worley Billings, bartender, told the officer the box was most likely taken when employees were not in the bar area between 7:40 p.m. and 8:40 p.m.
Leads went cold quickly for police, and all three cases are considered closed or inactive pending further information.
“I’m just frustrated,” Lusk said. She stated it took police a week to call her back about the thefts, and she called them again on Sept. 17, inquiring about the investigation and if Golden is seeing a mini crime wave. “I don’t know what to do at this point,” she said adding that it’s “so unusual for our nice little town.”
Captain Daryl Hollingsworth of the Golden Police Department observed an influx of visitors to downtown lately, and as shops become busy with out of town visitors, and local residents, opportunity is at its highest for someone to steal.
“None of the suspects appear to be the same which would tell us they are crimes of opportunity,” Hollingsworth said.
He suggested that businesses have enough employees on staff so they can greet people as they walk through the door, and occupy more areas in the store.
“If you are a criminal there to steal something, and someone greets you, you know that you have been seen, that you have been noticed and that might not be the best place to commit a crime,” he said.
The Golden Police Department is always willing to offer their services to business owners on how to improve security, and prevent thefts, Hollingsworth said.
“If they would like for us to do a survey of their store we would be happy to do that,” he said.
To report information regarding the thefts, call the Golden police non-emergency line at 303-384-8045.