Berkeley Co. deputies release surveillance footage in string of weekend burglaries

A magnified photo shows the suspect deputies are looking for in Berkeley County. (Source: BCSO)
A magnified photo shows the suspect deputies are looking for in Berkeley County. (Source: BCSO)

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Berkeley County deputies want the public's help in finding a man who they say robbed several businesses over the weekend.

The photo of the suspect holding a crowbar was taken inside on Black's Fish Camp in the Cross area according to the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies say other burglaries included the Santee Quick Stop, Henry's Bait and Tackle, and Black's Camp and The Sportsman's Bar.

"There's one way in, there's one way out, that long country road there," Black's Fish Camp owner Kevin Davis said. "So if I were a thief that's the last place I would want to break into."

But that didn't stop someone from breaking into Black's Camp in Cross early Sunday morning. Surveillance video taken from the business shows a man wearing a raincoat with a hood and covered face inside the place. Investigators say he first tried to pry open the back door with a crowbar. When that didn't work, the guy went to the front, unscrewed the light bulbs and pried open the front door. Once inside he pried open the register and stole cash.

"It's just so scary looking you know, and you just feel like you've been violated," Davis said. "We put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into this place and having someone come take everything we've worked for is pretty shocking."

"I think that's a very nonchalant fella," Black's Camp's former owner Violet Weiss said. "Can't believe he's that brave to spend so much time in a place, going through everything."

Investigators say the same burglar may have broken into the three other businesses.

The Sportsman's Bar was also hit early Sunday morning. Investigators say someone pried open a window to get inside and left behind receipts on the floor in front of the cash register.

Deputies could see a window broken and tills from the cash register that were disturbed at the Santee Quick Stop, according to the incident report.

Investigators say the burglar didn't bother to try to pry open any windows at Henry's Bait and Tackle Shop; instead, they say he went to the front door, shattered the glass and went inside. Three cash registers were missing money, the report states.

"It's sad, it's really sad, this is a local place," Henry's customer Gail Collins said. "We don't have a lot of businesses around here. For somebody to just break in and take what they want, it's sad."

Investigators are hoping the surveillance video will lead to an arrest and put the brakes on the burglaries.

"The only thing I'm glad no one was hurt and everything," Collins said. "You can always replace money but you can't replace lives so they'll replace everything else."

Anyone who knows the location of the man or has any information is asked to contact the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office at 843-719-4465 or CrimeStoppers of the Lowcountry at 843-554-1111.

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