SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash – It's no easy – or quiet – task to bust into an ATM machine once, let alone twice. But that's exactly what happened at the Spokane County Fairgrounds, and now police need your help catching the brazen thieves.
The first ATM was hit over Labor Day weekend inside the agriculture building on the fairgrounds, and nearly $17,000 in cash was taken. The $4,000 machine was destroyed as well.
As if that weren't enough for the owners of Cypress Advantage, the company that distributes the ATM's, it happened again around 3:45 Monday morning. That time another $4,000 machine in the plaza area was destroyed, and almost $10,000 cash was taken.
"It's been rare to be hit at all, we haven't been hit in 12 years, and we've been with the fair since 2007 unblemished," said one of the owners of Cypress Advantage, who asked to not be named.
Now, the couple behind the company are dealing with a lost totaling some $36,000 dollars – and they're still talking with their insurance company to determine if they'll be on the hook for it.
They do think the same people were behind both burglaries, because they were broken into the same way. They tell KHQ there are red flags here; there was no forced entry to the fairground buildings, and security guards were on duty.
"The second hit happened the night the fair ended with security on site, so I don't really know what to say about that," the owner added. "I felt we were safe and secure with roving guards, and the building being secured at 2 a.m. Nothing's secure."
The owners believe more than one person had to be behind this, and that somebody saw or heard something.
Now Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information that leads to the suspects. If you know anything, call 1-800-222-TIPS. You can remain anonymous and you may be eligible for a cash reward.