Burglars take gamble in east Houston gaming machine smash

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Several burglars were caught on camera smashing into video poker machines

Houston police are looking for a man they say burglarized a convenience store in northeast Houston early Wednesday morning. Two other men have been arrested and charged in the break-in of the Qwik Stop on Laura Koppe Road.

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Surveillance video shows the alleged burglars inside the convenience store

Police say the three men broke in using a sledge hammer, smashing a hole in the side of the store. Once inside, one man is seen on surveillance video breaking into a gaming machine using bolt cutters. He appears to reach into the machine, remove change, and fill his pockets.

The video goes on to show a second man using a sledge hammer to try and smash the glass window in front of the cash register. After a few minutes of being unsuccessful, the man with the bolt cutters can be seen breaking the window and climbing through it.

Police say the burglars stole cigarettes and other tobacco products. They also broke into the store's ATM.

The Qwik Stop owner got an alert on his phone about the break-in and called police while it was happening. When officers arrived, they arrested one man in the parking lot. Two other suspects took off.

"We set up a perimeter with a k-9 and helicopter. While we were searching for them with the k9, a citizen called in and advised there was someone in their backyard. Officers went to that location and located the second suspect. The third suspect is currently at large," said Lt. Larry Crowson with HPD.

The two men apprehended will be charged with burglarizing a business.
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