Mall burglars caught after hitting same stores two nights in a row

Mall burglaries

MASSENA, N.Y. (WWNY) - St. Lawrence Centre mall stores were burglarized two nights in a row.

Police say it was the same three burglars each time.

It seemed to work out fine for the suspected burglars on the first night, so they came back for a second night.

That didn’t work out as well.

They were caught red-handed at a nail salon.

They allegedly pried open a plate glass window at the front of the store in the pre-dawn hours Tuesday, but state police had already been called.

A foot chase and capture ensued.

Mall staff praised police.

“They were fantastic. They were here so quickly. They got the job done. They brought a whole team in to investigate. And they were here within minutes,” said Erica Leonard, St. Lawrence Centre mall general manager.

Charged with burglary were Joseph George, 18, of Hogansburg; Devon George, 18, of London, Ontario; and Tehahkerato Shenandoah, 19, of Hogansburg.

They were also charged with possession of a stolen UTV.

Progressive Imports owner Charles Cruikshank said his store was hit the night before.

“I found my gate pried up. And I came in and found all the smoking devices all gone here,” said Cruikshank.

A gate was damaged and Canadian money was also stolen.

Tuesday, Cruikshank learned the mall was broken into again.

“I was shocked, yeah,” he said.

Alleged burglar, Joseph George, landed an extra charge of possession of stolen property.

Police say he was found the second night wearing a hooded sweatshirt, price tag still on, from Progressive Imports.

The mall just added two new dining options.

Its sports arena is up and running.

The malls operators want people to know that this incident won’t set them back.

“I want everyone to know that the mall is open. We’re not going to let something like this stop us from moving forward. We’ve got big things planned for the mall.” said Leonard.

A mall staffer was put on security detail on Monday night.

He’s the one who spotted the alleged burglars entering the mall and called state police.

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