Midtown Detroit businesses targeted by rash of break-ins

- Popular businesses in Detroit's Midtown area are on high alert after a rash of robberies.

Many owners there are fed up and worried the crime will continue as long as the thieves go unpunished. Six businesses in Midtown are reporting break-ins, property damage and robberies in the past six weeks.

Those targeted include Traffic Jam and Snug, Selden Standard, Midtown Zef's Coney, Union Street, Midtown Liquor store and Pie Sci Pizza, a new business on Trumbull that's had the same guy break in three times in the past month.

"For that to be happening, that's a shame," said neighbor Rayshard Robinson. "That's businesses that have to eat."

"We don't keep money in the restaurant, I don't know why he keeps coming back," said Jeremy Damaske, the owner. "It's the same individual of him coming in all three times. I'm just really sick of replacing glass at this point."

The suspect got lucky and found cash the first time, but Damaske has kept the register empty since. But for some reason, he keeps coming back.

"This is our fourth piece of glass we've had to replace and each one is over $400," Damaske said. "Just stop breaking the windows."

Many of the other owners say they have not heard of any arrests in their cases either. Zef's also released surveillance video of their break in, with three men going rifling through the place.

Midtown regulars are also upset.

"We've really been trying to do our best to take care of the businesses around here and keep supporting local business," said Ana Gomulka. "But these kinds of things are hard."

"That's kind of crazy," said Robinson. "Our city is supposed to be building up and not continuously tearing down."

"Obviously it's not good," said Jason Kaye. "You're trying to build up your area, we've got the arts and entertainment around here, a great positive vibe going on, you want to cultivate that.

Damaske has started to come by his restaurant at night to keep an eye on it, worried his dream of opening a small business with his wife, could be put to an end.

"I just feel like I need help," he said. "I can't stop this guy by myself. It seems like the police just keep filing reports. Nothing is getting followed up with it.

Detroit police say they are still investigating and weren't able to check the status on all of the break-ins for FOX 2 tonight, each of these cases may or may not be related.

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