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Cell Phone Thieves Hit North Miami Beach Store

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North Miami Beach police are investigating the burglary of a cell phone store. (Source: CBS4)

North Miami Beach police are investigating the burglary of a cell phone store. (Source: CBS4)

Lauren-Pastrana-600x450 Lauren Pastrana
Lauren Pastrana joined CBS Miami in April 2012 as a reporter. ...
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South Florida Crime

NORTH MIAMI (CBS4) – A North Miami Beach cell phone store was burglarized early Saturday morning after a pick-up truck was driven through the front of the shop according to North Miami Beach Police.

The burglary happened at the Verizon Wireless store at 14744 Biscayne Blvd. just before 5 a.m., investigators said.

“It appears the truck drove all the way into the lobby area, damaging the counters, property display cases and stuff of that nature,” said Officer Rick Slusher.

Later on that day, the tire marks were still fresh on the carpet and a desk was in pieces.

Investigators said the burglars drove through the store after their first mode of entry failed.

“The subject gets out, takes out a toe strap, ties it to the front of the store and attempts to pull that front door,” said Officer Jason Ochoa.

Police have not revealed exactly what the crooks stole.

The property damage is estimated at more than $40,000, Officer Slusher explained.

“We’ve noticed an increase in these types of business burglaries in Miami Dade and Broward counties,” said Slusher. “We don’t know which are connected.”

Early Friday morning, there was a similar break-in at a Sprint Store on Flagler Street in West Miami-Dade.

In that case, the burglars took off with several smart phones and tablet computers, the shop owner said.

That store was boarded up and remained open for business.

At the Verizon retail location, the store opened a few hours late Saturday as crews cleaned up the glass and replaced the shatter windows with plywood

“If we can help identify who did this, we’d certainly like to do that and help bring them to justice,” said Public Relations manager for Verizon Wireless in Florida, Chuck Hamby.

According to Slusher, cops are looking for at least two men driving a black pick-up truck, possibly a Dodge, with front-end damage.

Anyone with information about these burglaries should contact Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS.

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