Group crashes van into Middleburg Heights gas station in attempt to steal ATM

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MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, Ohio (WJW) – Middleburg Heights police are searching for the suspects behind an attempted ATM smash-and-grab at the Speedway gas station early Monday.

Surveillance footage showed two vans driving into the Bagley Road parking lot around 4:20 a.m. One backed into the front wall of the gas station three times, smashing a hole in the wall. Six people then push the store’s ATM toward a second van. The clerk frantically called 911, and officers arrived within two minutes.

The video showed the suspects leaving without the ATM as officers pulled into the gas station. Investigators said they escaped northbound on Intestate 71.

Middleburg Heights Police Chief Ed Tomba said, while no one was hurt, there were people in and around the 24-hour gas station at the time of the attempted robbery.

“Taking a vehicle and ramming it through the front door is something that's very, very serious,” Tomba said. “They may think they're just going in there to get money or property, but there's a good possibility that somebody could get seriously injured.”

The same gas station was targeted during another attempted ATM smash-and-grab on Sept. 11. The suspects in that case also escaped before police arrived.

Tomba said thieves successfully stole an ATM from CVS.

“It is unusual for our city. Whether it's the same group, we don't know, but it definitely causes a concern for us,” he said.

Tomba said investigators with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation were processing one of the vans, which was left at the Speedway, for evidence including DNA and finger prints.

“Someone's going to get seriously, seriously hurt unless they're caught and they're stopped,” Tomba said.

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