DETROIT (WWJ) – A Detroit business owner is putting up his own money to help nab a couple of crooks who were caught on camera, breaking into his east side liquor store with a sledgehammer.

Steve Bahoura, who has owned the Van Dyke Liquor Market since the 90s, said he’s unbelievably upset that thieves continue to target his business, located on Van Dyke Road off I-94. The most recent break-in happened early Thursday morning.

“Around 4:20, the alarm company called me. They told me ‘We turned the camera on and we found somebody breaking into your place, and we have two people inside the place,'” Bahoura told WWJ’s Vickie Thomas.

Bahoura said he rushed from his home, clocking speeds over 80 mph on the freeway, hoping to reach the store while the crooks were still inside. But when he got there, all he found were tracks in the snow.

“They broke a wall in the building and they came into the office. They came to the safe and broke it open,” he said.

Bahoura said the thieves ransacked the place, making off with a handgun, about 40 cartons of cigarettes and over $4,000 in cash. He provided WWJ Newsradio 950 with a copy of the surveillance video, which shows one burglar swinging a sledgehammer to create a large hole that both eventually crawled through to get inside the store. The whole thing happened within a matter of minutes.

Bahoura said he’s recently been spending the night at the store, his shotgun within reach, after a break-in last month left him feeling vulnerable. He said he even had plans to sleep at the store Wednesday night, but his wife insisted he come home. Just over four hours later, the break-in happened.

“They are animals. Believe it or not, they are animals,” he said. “But you know what? I’ve got a good feeling. This time, believe it or not, I’m going to catch them. I will do everything to catch them.”

Bahoura is putting up a $2,000 reward for information that will help him catch those responsible for the break-in. Even if he catches the crooks, Bahoura said this latest incident just might have pushed him over the edge.

“Honestly, it makes me want to quit. If I have somebody buy me out, I would get the hell out of here,” he said.

Bahoura is asking anyone with information on the break-in to call his store at 313-469-1418. Tips can also be phoned to Detroit police at 313-267-4600.


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