Customers trying to enter Burger King Sunday morning saw the remains of an overnight theft attempt -- a broken door and window frame and the remains of the ATM.
Thieves tried to steal the ATM machine early Sunday from the Country Store/Burger King business on Jackson Road at the North Gate. The thieves -- interrupted by Rancho Murieta Security -- failed to get the machine or its money.
Sunday morning’s opening of Burger King was delayed as store employees cleaned up broken glass and the door and window frame. The shattered ATM lay on its side inside the store.
Store employee Bhupinder Singh said the thieves tried to get the ATM’s money box but failed. The cable from their effort still snaked from the ATM machine out what was left of the door.
Security Chief Greg Remson gave this version of events:
About 4:30 a.m., Melissa Bennett, the gate officer on duty at the North Gate, heard a loud crash and noted that the Country Store area was dark. Patrol Officer Rick Tompkins went to investigate. Security notified the sheriff’s department.
Tompkins reported he interrupted the thieves, who raced from the scene in a red pickup truck. He got the license number.
Tompkins followed the truck east on Jackson Road and noted the vehicle slowed at the South Gate and once again past the gate, and then the truck crashed through a gate on the Van Vleck property, on the north side of the road, adjacent to Murieta South.
Sheriff’s deputies arrived and searched the area but didn’t find the truck.
Remson said the truck’s license plate was traced to the Stockton area, adding that the sheriff’s department thinks it is likely the truck was stolen.
Thieves failed to get the Country Store's ATM in September 2008. There was another attempted ATM theft, in El Dorado Hills, 10 days ago.
The cable used in the attempted theft can be seen snaking from the ATM's frame out what's left of the door.