Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station officials are investigating a series of break-ins in the Newhall area and are sharing tips to help prevent business break-ins.
Over the past several weeks, businesses in the Old Town Newhall community including KHTS AM-1220, Total Financial Solutions, Bikram Yoga Santa Clarita and Maria’s Deli have been broken into.
During the last full week of June, 11 Part-1 crimes were reported, said Deputy Danial Dantice, SCV Sheriff’s Station Crime Prevention Unit Zone Leader for the Newhall area. The average tends to be around eight reports.
Part-1 crimes include “murder and nonnegligent homicide, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, larceny-theft and arson,” according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
KHTS AM-1220’s new station, located at 24320 Main Street in Newhall was broken into this past June.
Computers and construction tools were stolen, said station co-owner Carl Goldman.
About $1,500 worth of materials and tools were stolen, according to the construction contractor.
Not long after, Bikram Yoga Santa Clarita, which is in the process of moving to the 24300 block of Walnut Street, was broken into in a similar way.
“They stole a lot of the contractor’s items and tools. I’m pretty sure they did it in the middle of the night when it was dark,” said Ravinder Pilson, owner of Bikram Yoga Santa Clarita. “Because of the break-in at KHTS AM-1220, if there’s a bright side to it, I have some computer equipment that I removed from that location to my home before the break-in.
“It felt like ‘Oh great, something else.’ It’s been one thing after another and it’s just been a lot of hurdles to get the business done and open.”
Pilson is estimating about $2,000 to $3,000 worth of damage.
To add to the list, Maria’s Deli was broken into in late June.
“My brother everyday does some maintenance work, while he started to do the clean-up, this guy started breaking in,” said Bruno Simione, owner of Maria’s Deli.
The burglar took about $5,000 to $6,000 in cash, Simione said.
“I want him caught, I don’t care about the money — it can be replaced. As long as nobody gets hurt. The man threatened my brother.”
“Things are moving forward with the investigation,” said Lt. Brenda Cambra, leader of the SCV Sheriff’s Station Detective’s Bureau division.
Sheriff’s deputies responded to the new Total Financial Solutions location, at 24322 Main Street, next to the new KHTS AM-1220 station, early Wednesday where a white Toyota Corolla or Camry slammed into a glass door and two windows about four or five times before fleeing the scene, said Lt. Tom Bryski of the SCV Sheriff’s Station.
“I got a call in the middle of the night that somebody had crashed into our building and future location which is under construction,” said Arif Halaby, co-owner of Total Financial Solutions. “We look forward to moving in the next month or so. This is a little bit of a setback but construction should be able to be done on time with the move-in.”
Halaby said that it was “amazing” that the glass in the windows and door did not shatter.
The metal around the glass will have to be redone and the labor to install the windows and doors, which will cost the company more than planned, he said.
“Any financial setback like this is a problem but we will certainly overcome it and still open on time,” Halaby said.
But SCV Sheriff’s officials say this isn’t just happening in Newhall and the cases are not connected.
“It’s a trend in the summer time. It’s almost everywhere,” Dantice said. “Crime tends to go up a little bit in the summer — it’s not that much worse in Newhall.”
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station officials investigate cases until they have been solved, officials said. One in particular involves a suspect who allegedly stole merchandise from a business on Magic Mountain Parkway, and has been identified by residents in the Santa Clarita Valley community.
“We want to thank the community that person has been identified and we’re continuing to work the case,” Cambra said.
For businesses, make sure to secure back doors and have some kind of lighting in the business so when deputies come by, they can see, Dantice said. Also, make sure to not leave money inside the business.
“If your cash register is visible from a window, open the cash register door and show that there’s no money,” he said, adding that if the cash register is closed, a burglar might think it has last night’s money or tomorrow’s till.
SCV Sheriff’s Station officials ask the community to help prevent or report crimes by contacting the station at 661-255-1121. If you have any information about these crimes and wish to remain Anonymous, call “LA Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or using the website.