‘It was the perfect crime’: Thief makes off with downtown store’s cash in under 40 seconds


SPOKANE, Wash. — A burglar broke into a downtown Spokane business and took off with all the cash in the register early Wednesday morning. The shop’s owner said the criminal made it in and out within 35 seconds.

The Yuppy Puppy posted images from surveillance video shortly after the crime was discovered.

Store owner Aquila Brown told 4 News Now it was the perfect crime. Not only was the thief quick, he seemed to know exactly where the surveillance cameras were. The register was moved a few weeks ago and he still knew where it was, according to Brown.

“He had clearly staked the place out. That’s crazy. We’re just a little pet store. Why would you waste your time?” Brown said.

Brown said she does not think this was a former or current employee.

“He was a pro,” Brown said.

Brown said the crime came at a particularly bad time, with added costs of an increased minimum wage and the notoriously slow after-Christmas season.

“You learn the hard way and $200 isn’t the end of the world, but you know, it’s a new year and a new budget,” Brown said. “It’s not the way you want to start things.”

Thankfully, the cat who stays in the store, Boinks, was not harmed.

“Our store cat was fine. That was our first concern,” Brown said.

The longtime business owner admitted she made a few security mistakes that she won’t make again. But, she hoped that by sharing her story, other business owners won’t make the same errors.

“Lock your til away at night. That was stupid [not to do] on my part. If you have an alarm, remember to set it,” Brown said. “Just silly things that we all know better, but you just get in a routine and forget.”

Brown reported the theft to police, but has also called upon the community for help. Anyone who recognizes the man should call Crime Check at 509-456-2233.