Masked burglars steal cigarettes from north Houston convenience store

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by Tim Wetzel / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on January 14, 2013 at 5:16 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 15 at 1:23 PM

HOUSTON -- Surveillance video from a convenience store shows a burglary that looks identical  one at another store last week.

The latest victim spotted the similarity and contacted KHOU 11 News for help.

The two burglars broke through the front door and then climbed through a hole in the ceiling to get into a protective case in a north Houston store. They didn't care who was watching because the entire crime was caught on surveillance video.

Within minutes, the crooks emptied the store out of five or six thousands of dollars worth of cigarettes.

Salman Momin is the store owner’s son. He shared the video of the thieves peeling off the store’s shutters and then prying apart the front doors.

Once inside, one burglar climbed up on the counter and went through the ceiling to get through the bulletproof glass. He then unlocked the door to let his friend inside.

For nearly five minutes, the two loaded up on cigarettes and rummaged through the store.

“Stealing from people is not how you make a living,” said Momin. “You make a living by working hard and making money.”

But these guys seemed to want easy and fast cash.

Just last week, another gas station on Bissonnet in southwest Houston was hit by a very similar break-in.

It’s possible they could be related, but right now, police don’t know.

“It’s not fair,” said Momin.

Because of the break-in, he won’t get a paycheck this month. He blames not only the burglars, but other stores that might buy the stolen cigarettes.

“Cause if they are buying cigarettes from these people, it's going to happen more to other stores,” said Momin.

Store owners are hoping somebody comes forward with a tip, and are hoping police arrest these guys before they hit another business. 

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