ONLY ON 13: Theft caught on camera as crooks distract victim

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Theft caught on camera in Kingwood, Marla Carter reports. (KTRK)

Thieves creating a diversion is nothing new, but this most recent scheme was one police had not seen before.

The suspects' plot was caught on surveillance video.

Bunnang Chy owns Donut Palace in Kingwood. He says his mom was working alone just before closing time on Saturday when a man and woman walked in.

"They came into the shop, acted like a regular customer," said Bunnang Chy, owner of Donut Palace.

But it was no normal visit. While Chy's mother helped the female customer, the man went in the back to the bathroom. Chy says while the man was in the bathroom, he tampered with the toilet's waterline and cause the toilet to flood.

Chy's mother was still at the counter helping the female customer. Then the man returned and complained to Chy's mother about the broken toilet, according to Chy.

"The guy told my mom to go into the bathroom to go check out the water because it flooded over here," said Chy.

Chy said the shop started to flood and the water rose about two inches in the store. His mother left the counter to fix the toilet. When she left the counter, surveillance video shows the female customer go behind the counter. Then you see the customer grab Chy's mother's purse, within seconds the thief is out the door.

The man soon follows.

Chy said his mother had hundreds of dollars of cash in her purse and now it's all gone.

"My mom over here, works really hard. She gets up early in the morning every day. We're here in America, that's what it's for," said Chy.

Chy says it's happening too often. Just last month the pawn shop next door to Donut Palace was the victim of an attempted a smash and grab. The suspect in that case though, is behind bars.

"It was unsuccessful for him. He went to jail. They did catch him," said Cary Kuperman of Kingwood Pawn and Jewelry.

It has Chy on edge.

"In my opinion, once they succeed one time, they will go to the next shop. I don't know who will be the next victim," said Chy.

If you have any information or have seen the individuals in the surveillance video, you're asked to call the Houston Police Department's burglary division.
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