Police Warn of Thieves Stealing ATMs in Ontario
According to Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), thieves have taken Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) from 58 businesses across southwestern Ontario since January 2017.
These businesses were targeted in the Brant, Waterloo, Hamilton, Owen Sound, and Niagara areas, reads a recent OPP release.
In response to the prevalence of this type of theft, police are "asking business owners to evaluate the benefits of ATM ownership."
According to police, the theft happens the same way every time.
Police say that when suspects steal an ATM, they typically do it between midnight and 5 a.m.
First, suspects visit the business and scope out the location of the ATM.
Then, "the suspects will ram a stolen vehicle through the front entrance or windows of the building, wrap a chain around the ATM and forcible rip it from the business."
Of course, damages are expected.
"The damage left behind ranges from $20,000 - $250,000 to the building and in some cases leaves the building structurally unsound," reads the release.
"The average loss from and ATM is approximately $10,000, plus loss of revenue while the store is closed and the associated repair costs. The costs can easily become unbearable, not to mention the increase to insure the business again. The average profit from an ATM is approximately .20 cents for every $20 dispensed. "
According to police, there is no pattern to these incidents, and locations sucha s gas stations, convenience stores, large chain restauants, and even shopping malls are vulnerable.
Police are encouraging business owners with an ATM who see any suspicious activity to report it immediately.
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