CHESTERFIELD, Mo. — Chesterfield police believe a string of perfume thefts have been pulled off by the same small group of people though the end total is huge: about $50,000 in merchandise.
"They are extremely efficient," Sgt. Robert Powell said. "And they have been doing it, unfortunately, with a lot of success over the last couple of months."
Powell said they believe four people, likely two men and two women, are hitting stores in St. Louis and St. Charles counties and running out with bags of perfume.
Powell said that their suspects come in with an empty trash bag, duffle bag, or basket before heading to the aisles where they clear out as much product as they can.
Sometimes the whole crime takes less than a minute.
Powell said they aren't concerned that staff and customers may see them.
In one video, a suspect waits by the front door, holding it open for an accomplice who leaves about 17 seconds later.
"Nothing surprises me anymore," he said. "And with the criminal element, if you have success the first time, nothing is going to stop you from repeating that same activity until you are caught."
Powell says they estimate the Chesterfield businesses are out about $50k, but they're partnering with other agencies so the grand total might be $10,000 to $15,000 higher.
If you have any information on the perfume thefts, call Chesterfield Police at (636) 537-3000.