“Gotten out of control:” Business owners frustrated over almost daily snatch-and-grab thefts

MILWAUKEE -- It is more than just a snatch-and-grab of merchandise -- it's a massive theft of merchandise from local businesses that happens on a daily basis. Now, shop owners are doing what they can to save their businesses.

"They are definitely threatening, definitely armed," said Hardip Gill, business owner. "This is an ongoing situation that has gotten out of control."

Gill shared his frustration and some surveillance video of thieves ransacking his family business.

"They are going for a large amount of items," Gill said.

About four or five suspects are seen running into Singh's Gas and Food on W. Hopkins, carrying bags and filling them up. Some are seen outright walking out with trays of snacks while a lookout holds the office door shut, barricading the owner inside.

"They aren't afraid," Gill said.

The owner who arms himself pleads for them to leave.

The suspects made several trips taking hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise and load up a white truck.

"We'd like to see police take affirmative action against these people," Gill said.

Gill said the crooks hit up the store several times -- and is fed up with these crimes and the string of similar thefts in the area.

Suspects were caught on camera stealing from a Citgo not too far away from 27th and Capitol in Milwaukee. Gill hopes their faces are recognized and authorities put a stop to it -- concerned about the safety of both the employees and customers.

"There's going to be a point where these crimes are going to escalate," Gill said. "They are not phased and they will continue to do this someone is going to get hurt or killed. We want to make a proactive attempt to stop this behavior in our community."

Police say officers conduct business checks regularly at the location in question and others to help provide presence.

Owners say they do not want to be driven away by the losses.

FOX6 News also reached out to Milwaukee Alderwoman Milele Coggs to learn more about efforts to help protect business in that neighborhood. We have yet to receive a response.