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Raiders steal $7,000 of goods from electronics shop

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A break-in at Gear & Gadget Bermuda on Queen Street in the early hours of May 23, 2023 (Photograph courtesy of Gear & Gadget Bermuda Facebook)

An electronics shop on Queen Street became the latest business to be targeted by burglars after a string of incidents in the past two months.

Kenneth Pemberton, who runs Gear & Gadget Bermuda, said yesterday that items worth about $7,000 were taken after the property was broken into in the early hours of Tuesday.

He added: “What they’re doing is organised, meaning there is more than one person.

“There are people doing the hits, then there is a lookout … it’s an organised, focused thing.”

The Bermuda Police Service said last week that detectives were investigating 11 reported burglaries and two attempted burglaries at service stations, grocery stores, electronics shops and jewellery outlets between April 12 and May 16.

A spokesman explained then that many of the incidents happened between 3am and 5.30am.

The BPS did not say yesterday if the latest break-in was thought to be linked to any of the others.

Mr Pemberton said that Gear & Gadget Bermuda was fitted with more than 20 cameras and an audible deterrent. He told The Royal Gazette that a large object was used by the culprits to break the reinforced glass.

He added: “They ran in trying to get a few items, they looked like they knew exactly what they were looking for.

“It was about $10,000 in items taken and damaged.”

A break-in at Gear & Gadget Bermuda on Queen Street in the early hours of Tuesday (Photograph courtesy of Gear & Gadget Bermuda Facebook)

Mr Pemberton explained that the shop was first targeted at 3.02am but that burglars struck again just before 3.40am and also at 4.30am.

He said the electronic goods stolen were worth about $7,000.

Mr Pemberton added: “We’re not just talking about loss of items, we’re also talking about loss of business as well — the time that we’re not open to serve customers.”

He said: “For you to say, ‘hey, I don’t really care, I’m going to break this door that doesn’t belong to me and is owned by whomever; then I’m going to enter this business that doesn’t belong to me and is owned by whomever; and take these things that don’t belong to me … so that I can then resell it for a low amount of money so that I can get by’ — it’s a very selfish nature.”

The businessman had a message to members of the public offered any items that may have been stolen.

“If the price is too good to be true, it’s definitely something that you want to make sure this person can either produce a receipt for or show some type of tangible evidence that this was purchased, maybe abroad,” he said.

“Somebody can say this was given as a gift; you don’t want to pass judgment on anybody but does it look like this person’s going to be receiving a gift of this nature?

“Do your research on what this item might cost locally and if it’s less than half the price then there’s definitely something that’s not right.”

A post on the Gear & Gadget Bermuda Facebook page notified customers on Tuesday that the shop’s opening would be delayed because of the burglary.

It added: “We understand the inconvenience this may cause and want to emphasise that the safety and security of our customers and employees remain our top priority.

“We are co-operating fully with the local authorities, who are conducting a thorough investigation into the incident.

“Rest assured, we are working diligently to restore everything to its rightful place.”

Mr Pemberton said the shop — which sells home security products among its range of electronic devices — soon returned to business as usual and that support from the public had been “amazing”.

A BPS spokesman confirmed yesterday that “another burglary occurred around 4.30am, on Tuesday, May 23 at Gear & Gadget located on Queen Street”.

He added: “A number of electronic items were stolen including a T1 e-bike, as well as Xbox and PlayStation gaming consoles.

“This incident, as with all reported burglaries, is being actively investigated and anyone with information, is urged to contact the Criminal Investigations Unit at 247-1744 or the independent and confidential Crime Stoppers number 800-8477.

“You may also provide the information by speaking to a police officer with whom you’re comfortable or via the BPS community reporting portal at https://portal.police.bm.”

Police said last Friday that a wave of burglaries at businesses across the island included thefts of Apple products, JBL earbuds, other electronic devices, cigarettes, jewellery and cash.

Burglary and attempted burglary locations

The following businesses have been targeted in recent weeks:

April 12: P-Tech on Reid Street, Hamilton

April 22: Rubis Terceira’s on North Shore Road, Smith’s

April 23: Crawl Hill Esso Tiger Market in Hamilton Parish

April 25: Collector’s Hill Esso Tiger Market in Devonshire

April 26: Sunglass & Watch Shop on Reid Street, Hamilton

April 26: RUBiS Causeway near Blue Hole Hill in Hamilton Parish

April 27: Warwick Esso Tiger Market on Middle Road, Warwick

May 10: Audio Visual Ltd on Mangrove Bay Road, Sandys

May 14: An attempted burglary at Red Laser Electronics on Bakery Lane, Pembroke

May 14: Empire Grocery on North Shore Road, Devonshire

May 14: Art Mel’s Restaurant on St Monica’s Road, Pembroke

May 15-16: Attempted burglary at Astwood Dickinson on Front Street in Hamilton

May 16: Rubis Warwick Service Station on South Road, Warwick

May 23: Gear & Gadget Bermuda on Queen Street, Hamilton

A BPS spokesman then reminded businesses and homeowners to make sure alarm systems and security cameras worked properly and to report anything suspicious.

He said large amounts of cash should not be left on commercial premises.

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Published May 25, 2023 at 7:59 am (Updated May 25, 2023 at 8:07 am)

Raiders steal $7,000 of goods from electronics shop

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