Smash-and-Grabs Victimize 29 St. Louis Storefronts in 25 Days

A depressingly long list of small businesses have fallen victim in recent weeks

St. Louis has always felt a bit like the Wild West. But lately, things seem worse. If your Kia or Hyundai hasn’t been robbed and/or stolen yet, maybe your favorite business has gotten its storefront busted into.

The latter crime has become increasingly prevalent. So much so, we decided to search for every smash-and-grab we could find. The results were striking.

After combing through the past few weeks of news reports (thank you, dogged local journalists), we’ve found that at least 29 businesses have been broken into in the past 25. Most are locally-owned restaurants.

As if restaurants haven’t been through enough already (the pandemic, rising food prices, a constant worker shortage). Can’t thieves rob, I dunno, an Amazon warehouse?

November 11: Thieves broke into Cluster Buster Sweet Treats in Normandy by smashing an entrance window. Last week was the restaurant’s final days, however, so the restaurant was closed, and it’s not yet clear whether Cluster Buster lost anything.

November 10: KMOV reports suspects broke into Pappy’s Smokehouse in midtown. Suspects threw something through a glass door. Upon entering, they took a cash drawer and some change.

November 9: Several restaurants were victims of smash-and-grabs Wednesday morning. Suspects hit Vicia, Hi-Pointe Drive-in off McCausland, Five Guys, Sunny’s Cantina, Mack’s Bar and Grill, and Mack D’Licious Ice Cream.

October 31: In the early morning hours of Halloween, six men broke into 1115 Pine Street where 39 Castles Sneakers & Style and Simply Delicious are located. The men ransacked the businesses, police said; 39 Castles lost multiple shoes; a cash register and a bag of money were taken from Simply Delicious. Then, less than 30 minutes later, a suspect threw a brick through the front door of Rooster, a popular brunch spot off Washington Avenue.

Soon after, police responded to break-ins at The Parlor and Hot Java Bar — both located off Manchester in the Grove.

And about 10 minutes after that, officers responded to a burglary alarm at Urban Chestnut Brewing Co. down the street.

October 27: A string of break-ins on the morning of October 27 resulted in thousands of dollars of damage at several area restaurants. KMOV reported that from 2:45 a.m. to around 4 a.m., thieves targeted Mizu Sushi Bar, Pop’s Blue Moon, Hamilton’s Urban Steakhouse & Bourbon Bar, Winnie’s Wine Bar and DB’s Sports Bar.

October 25: Around 4:30 a.m., thieves broke into The Island in Soulard, Taco Circus and Platypus in the Grove.

October 22: Someone forced their way into Yellowbelly in the Central West End by breaking through a glass door.

October 21: Three men smashed into Steve’s Hot Dogs and looked for cash. According to reporting from Fox 2, the thieves left empty-handed. Around 4 a.m. the same day, burglars broke the front door of Exotic Bar and Grill off Cherokee.

October 18: Thieves broke into Thai Bowl off Forest Park Avenue and Hon’s Wok a few doors down. Nearly 30 minutes later, someone tried to break into The Wing Stop on Lindell Boulevard by throwing a brick into the storefront’s window.

October 17: Around 3 a.m., a suspect broke the windows of Brasserie by Niche in the Central West End.

Did we miss any? Send any smash-and-grabs incidents to [email protected] Coming soon: Riverfront Times Daily newsletter. We’ll send you a handful of interesting St. Louis stories every morning. Subscribe now to not miss a thing.

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About The Author

Monica Obradovic

Monica Obradovic is a staff writer for the Riverfront Times.
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