SATURDAY: Partly sunny and warmer with showers and thunderstorms developing by mid- afternoon. High: 85. Winds: Southwest 10-15 mph.
SATURDAY NIGHT: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Low: 62. Winds: West 5-10 mph.
Niantic Break-Ins Now Federal Investigation
A man accused of breaking into a Niantic convenience store is now at the center of a federal investigation. Macon County Sheriff’s deputies say the thief did not only break into P&G Quickstop but the Niantic Post Office as well.
That's federal property, and while it appears nothing was taken from it, that's not the case for the neighboring convenience store.
"He kind of went shopping through the store with a tote," P&G Quickstop Owner Gary Mathias said.
Deputies said the thief pried open a window, then took what he wanted inside the store.
"Frozen pizzas, noodles, beef jerky," Mathias said.
While this apparently hungry and picky thief was surveying the shelves, something else was surveying him.
“The owner has plenty of surveillance tape," Deputy Loen Kallenbach said.
Before Mathias was a convenience store owner, he was a police officer. The cop-turned-shop-owner said the thief won't be shopping around for long.
“There might be somebody who sees this [surveillance tape] and, ‘God that's so and so!'" he said.
That's the hope, because Mathias is out more than just frozen pizza.
“It was right around $2,200 between the cash, cigarettes and the food," Kallenbach said.
Deputies said the Niantic Post Office just down the street was hit up too.
”At this point, we haven't found anything missing yet," Kallenbach said.
The post office is federal property, so a U.S. postal inspector is on the case.
“Since it is...an active investigation, we cannot make any comments about the investigation itself at this time,” U.S. Postal Investigator Joshua Bergerom said.
Meanwhile, it's back to business for P&G Quickstop. This time from paying customers, not those who take and go.
“Small business is not, it's not that easy," Mathias said. "We're in a recession with everybody else and every dollar counts."