Pawn Express in downtown Kent suffered an estimated $75,000 to $100,000 in damages after a man reportedly rammed a stolen truck into the business.
The man, who as of Nov. 18 remained at large, allegedly stole a Ford F-150 from Way Scarff Ford in Auburn, broke into a cabinet shop in Kent to steal tools and then tried to break in to Pawn Express, 320 E. Gowe St., according to Yuriy Khryukin, a Pawn Express employee who reached out to the Kent Reporter.
The Pawn Express security system sent a burglar alarm alert at about 9:32 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 12. Kent Police were dispatched. The man fled the scene before officers arrived. He did not enter the business.
Video surveillance from the businesses captured the man inside the truck. Videos also showed the man ramming into Pawn Express and speeding away.
“Outside it appeared just the metal shutters had been damaged,” Khryukin said in an email. “Once inside, the true extent of the damage was revealed. The entire glass section had been shattered, door knocked off its hinges, support beams pushed in and folding gate mangled.”
The estimate repair/replacement cost is $75,000 to $100,000, Khryukin said.
“The rolling shutter that was installed about a year and half ago was damaged and may need to be completely replaced,” he said. “There were two approximately 20 feet by 6 feet pieces of tempered, armored glass that were completely shattered. The glass door and folding gates behind them were also destroyed and the frame pushed in. A 6 feet by 6 feet tall glass showcase was smashed along with many glass and crystal pieces inside. The door of a smaller case was also broken, rendering it unusable.”
Pawn Express opened in 2013 on East Gowe Street but has been in Kent about 25 years.
The cabinet shop suffered about $4,000 damage and had about $400 worth of tools taken.
“It is traumatic to be a victim of a crime like this, and keeps you up at night,” Khryukin said. “It is overwhelming to try to manage this level of repair, while still operating a small business. We have less than 10 employees and do not have labor to spare. In addition to the repair, we are doing everything we can to see this criminal brought to justice.”
Khryukin said crime has become too common in town.
“Like most businesses in Kent, we have experienced multiple acts of vandalism, and crime throughout the years,” he said.
Pawn Express posted photos of the man in the truck to its Facebook page. The stolen truck was recovered, according to Way Scarff Ford.
Kent Police haven’t been much help.
“The police have told us zero about this case,” Khryukin said. “We, the victims, are working together to figure out what happened and try to identify this guy by social media.”
Kent Police have not responded to a Kent Reporter email for information about the case.
“We hope the photos will help,” Khryukin said. “He was armed (a gun could be seen in truck photo) and is dangerous. We just hope he’s caught before he potentially hurts someone next time.”