REPORT: Suspect In Different Disguises Repeatedly Fails To Rob Los Angeles Store, Only Manages To Break Door

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Kate Hirzel Contributor
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A suspect dressed in different disguises has repeatedly failed to rob a Los Angeles store, the storeowner says.

The owner of a popular tennis shop is on edge after experiencing a series of break-in attempts throughout the summer, according to local outlet KLTA. The most recent incident was 4 p.m. Sunday, the outlet reported, citing the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD).

“Somebody’s been trying to break into my shop for probably the last two months,” Westwood Sporting Goods owner Richard Hartman told KTLA. “They’ve been sticking screws in my door and breaking it, so I can’t get in the shop.” 

The suspect reportedly attempted to break in while wearing a sheriff’s deputy uniform, followed by another incident wearing a firefighter’s uniform, according to KTLA. Hartman, who has installed surveillance cameras to protect his store, told the outlet he believes the same person is responsible. Still, the suspect has only managed to break the store’s door, the outlet reported.

“It’s getting very annoying,” Hartman told KTLA. “He’s tried to break in at least seven times. I’ve replaced the locks at least five or six times. It’s very frustrating. It’s cost me over $1,000 in locksmith fees.” 

During one of the alleged attempts, the suspect reportedly breached the shop’s security system and was forced to flee. Hartman immediately chased the suspect into a rear alley, where the suspect made his getaway by jumping into a silver 2023 Lexus convertible, according to KTLA. (RELATED: News Cameras Capture Man Stealing Two Different Vehicles During Police Chase)

“I drove my van down the alley, jumped out of my car and said, ‘Hey!’ and he looked at me and started running, so I started chasing him,” Hartman told the local outlet.

Police advised Hartman against chasing the individual, warning of potential danger if the suspect had a gun. Police have reportedly increased patrols in the area, but have not yet been able to capture the alleged intruder. 

“If he has a problem, come on in and let me know what the problem is. He wants a racket, let me know,” Hartman continued.