A second break-in in little more than a month has one South Surrey businessman wondering how he can afford to keep in business in operation.
At approximately 4 a.m. Tuesday, Natalia Jewellers was broken into – the locked front doors were smashed – and had merchandise stolen. Store owner John Gulerian said the value of the goods stolen had not yet been tallied, adding that “they took whatever they didn’t take last time.”
The South Surrey store, located in Morgan Crossing at 102C-15735 Croydon Dr., was also broken into in the early morning hours of May 15. Gulerian said more than $40,000 of jewelry was stolen in the first incident.
After the first break-in, Gulerian called for an increased police presence in Morgan Crossing, and the second incident only furthers his claim, he said, that more needs to be done to protect business owners from theft.
He added that, though he was fully insured for both thefts, his insurance rates are now surely to rise.
“It is very, very frustrating. Always the victim pays, and the bad guys go free,” he said. “It makes you sick to your stomach.
“What do I have to do? Maybe I build a fortress. Maybe I have to move my business away, or close it down. It is not a healthy situation.”
After the May 15 break-in, Surrey RCMP Cpl. Bert Paquet said police were keeping an eye on the area, through both uniformed and plainclothes patrols.
On Tuesday, he echoed that statement, adding that patrols have increased in the area since the April shooting death of Craig Widdifield, which occurred on the other side of Morgan Crossing.
Paquet added that while statistics show commercial break-and-enters are down in South Surrey over the past four weeks – with only eight on record – the two break-ins at Natalia Jewellers are disconcerting.
“It is extremely frustrating from a police perspective, so I can only imagine how the owners must feel,” he said.
Paquet said the RCMP’s crime-reduction team would be in contact with Gulerian to see if anything else can be done to reduce crime in the area.
“Obviously, we can’t be everywhere at at once, but we owe it to the owner to engage with them to see if anything can be done to prevent this from happening again,” Paquet said.
Anyone with information on those responsible for Tuesday’s break-in is asked to contact police at 604-599-0502.