Daring break and enter leaves prominent Katherine Terrace business down $10,000

VANDALISM: The side entry to the Katherine supermarket was smashed so the thieves could gain entry.
VANDALISM: The side entry to the Katherine supermarket was smashed so the thieves could gain entry.

One of the most secure businesses in Katherine has been ransacked twice in just over a week.

Hundreds of dollars worth of cigarettes and alcohol had been stolen, adding to the thousands lost to businesses in Katherine over the past few weeks.

Owners put the cost in loss of stock and damage at more than $10,000.

Break-ins on commercial businesses have doubled in the past year.

Six young people were seen fleeing the scene early this morning by security, after they had triggered the alarm.

Bob Loughnan, owner of 5 Rivers Supermarket on Katherine Terrace, today said he was shocked and disappointed his shop had been hit twice. 

“I have owned my store for two and a half years and I have never experienced this amount of break-ins in a town,” Mr Loughnan said.

“They know they have a few minutes before security gets here, they took advantage of those minutes and took what they could and got out,” he said. 

BROKEN: Behind the security bars the glass door was pushed through allowing for entrance.

BROKEN: Behind the security bars the glass door was pushed through allowing for entrance.

The store is on a busy strip of Katherine Terrace and is highly secure with metal grids, padlocks and an alarm system protecting the entrances. 

“Something is wrong with Katherine,” Mr Loughnan said. 

“No wonder people don’t want to do business here.”

Mr Loughnan said his alarm was set off at 5.29 this morning. 

“They jimmied open the padlock on the gate and smashed the glass door with a rock.

“Then they tried to smash through the new window I had replaced just days ago to get to the alcohol.

“They couldn’t get through so they unhinged the roller doors and got in anyway.” 

“It must be a gang,” he said. 

SMASHED: The entry to the liquor department of the store was broken into.

SMASHED: The entry to the liquor department of the store was broken into.

Police investigators were at the supermarket at noon today investigating the latest break-in. 

The store remained closed for the morning due to the damage. 

“It has been a loss of business on top of everything else,” Mr Loughnan said. 

Katherine Police are currently investigating four unlawful entries which allegedly occurred over the weekend, a NT Police spokeswoman said. 

“Investigations are ongoing.”

This is the third weekend in under a month which has seen multiple businesses in Katherine suffer from smash and grab break-ins.

Despite multiple arrests by police, the break-ins continue across town. 

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