Thieves target family's coin shops in Martinez, Vallejo

Surveillance video showed how thieves targeted a Bay Area coin dealer. 

Store manager Jennifer, who declined to give her last name, said her family's two businesses have each been targeted by groups of thieves in a span of two months.

The criminals were not able to get inside to steal items.

But Jennifer estimated that they caused $47,000 in damages to the two stores in Martinez and Vallejo.

She hoped that the surveillance videos will help catch those responsible.

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The most recent attempted burglary took place at Martinez Coin & Jewelry Exchange on busy Alhambra Avenue.

"They dropped one crowbar, forgot to pick it back up and started working on my second interior door," said Jennifer as she pointed to the surveillance video of the attempted burglary that happened around 3:40 a.m. Tuesday.

Two thieves used crowbars to pry open the glass entrance door and a second interior door.

A third suspect waited in a getaway car.

Jennifer said she feels angry and violated, but thankfully the thieves were unable to pry open a third door because of special reinforcement installed a week ago.      

She said that was done after the family's Vallejo store was severely damaged during an attempted burglary in March which also took place in the early morning hours.

"It's your living.  It's your livelihood. And now, you've got to deal with this in the middle of the night," Jennifer said. The Vallejo store remains closed. 

She's still waiting to get the doors replaced due to supply chain issues.

Jennifer suspects that some of the same people are involved in both burglary attempts. 

She said 13 to 15 other coin stores in the Bay Area have been hit by thieves since March and that the suspect descriptions are similar.

The thieves wore hoodies, masks and used three-foot-long bright yellow crowbars. She shared an image of the suspect vehicle in the Martinez attempted break-in: a 4-door sedan with a paper license plate.

It starts with the letter "B" and ends with an 8 and a zero.

"It's not just a property crime. We're talking six-figure losses for some of these businesses. That's a lot of money," Jennifer said. "I want them arrested and prosecuted to the highest extent of the law."

Jennifer said Martinez police have been responsive

She and other business owners plan to meet with Vallejo city officials Monday to get answers.