NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Employees at Last Chance Liquors in East Nashville said this is the second week in a row that the store has been hit, both times by the same suspect.
“We want to protect the businesses that we’ve invested a lot of time and money and effort into; we want it to be a safe place for our customers to come,” Aaron Armstrong explained.
The liquor store on Dickerson Pike has been around since the 1940s and as the name says, it was once the last place to buy liquor when headed out of town before crossing the city line.
“We’ve got people who have been coming here for two generations that came in with their parents to people who are new to the area, and we really want to be a place where everybody is welcomed and really have that neighborhood retail shop feel,” Armstrong said.
He hopes to keep the neighborhood feel at the local bottle shop for generations to come, so he’s invested in surveillance cameras and is taking a number of steps to make it clear shoplifting won’t be tolerated.
Surveillance footage from the afternoon of Tuesday, Sept. 12 shows a group of three people working together. The suspects then got away with six bottles of tequila.
“I think they knew what they were doing. The one person was trying to distract the clerk; the other guys were slipping out, and then once they were more distracted, someone was able to grab the other two bottles,” Armstrong said.
Employees said two of the suspects took off in a dark blue Pontiac.
“We have video from a neighboring business of them driving down Cleveland and picking up the third person,” Armstrong explained.
One week later, one of the suspects returned and hit the store again.
According to Armstrong, the suspect walked out with two bottles of Hennessy. The suspect then shoved the bottles into his backpack as he ran off, but this time, employees of Last Chance Liquors followed and took a picture of him resting a couple of blocks away.
“It looked like at that point he had just ducked into someone’s yard and stopped,” Armstrong said.
The employees recovered the bottles of booze, with Armstrong saying it’s not so much about the property as it is about sending a message.
“We want people to know that they are going to be on video. We are going to pursue it; we are going to post the photos and video, and then we are going to offer an award to see if we can’t get those people identified and caught, and then we are going to prosecute charges,” Armstrong said.
According to Armstrong, the store is working with Crime Stoppers and is offering a $500 reward for information that leads to the identification and prosecution of those involved. If you have any information, call Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.