A van was found running in a Midtown neighborhood Wednesday morning, hours after police suspect it was used to back through the front doors of a nearby CVS.
Four men in a white van reportedly drove through the CVS at Ansley Mall, located in the 1500 block of Piedmont Avenue, around 4:30 a.m. Atlanta police Maj. Darin Schierbaum told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the men were trying to steal cash from the store’s ATM.
The attempt shattered the storefront and toppled several displays.
Around 9 a.m., a resident in the nearby Ansley Park neighborhood called 911 when he noticed a 2010 Ford Econoline parked outside his house with its doors open and motor running.
“We do believe it is connected and was used in that smash-and-grab,” Schierbaum said.
The van was apparently abandoned on Avery Drive, less than a mile from the CVS.
“It appears the vehicle was stolen by punching the steering column, and that’s why the vehicle is still running,” Schierbaum said from the scene. “We're going to process it for any evidence, anything that we could find that would identify the perpetrators.”
The 911 caller’s neighbor, Van Dennis Ferioli, said he made the connection between the strange van and the burglary after he noticed damage to the CVS on his morning coffee run to the local Starbucks.
“It was the talk of the store that a vehicle had driven into CVS to try to get the ATM,” Ferioli said. When his neighbor inquired about the Ford, he said he knew “obviously, it’s the getaway van.”
“It’s a great neighborhood,” Ferioli said, “and it’s the price of living in town.”
Police are asking for anyone in Ansley Park who may have seen something Wednesday morning to contact Crime Stoppers. Schierbaum said he hopes that someone’s surveillance cameras caught a glimpse of the thieves.
Tipsters can remain anonymous, and be eligible for rewards of up to $2,000, by contacting Crime Stoppers Atlanta at 404-577-8477, texting information to 274637 or visiting crimestoppersatlanta.org.
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