Window smashed at Ninth Street pawn shop


— Police were taking fingerprints and blood samples at a downtown business Friday morning after someone smashed in a plate-glass window overnight.

Johanna Russell said she arrived at her pawn shop, Mister Money, at about 8 a.m. to find shattered glass on the sidewalk and a large metal ashtray on a table inside the shop. It was quickly evident the perpetrator had suffered a cut while throwing the sidewalk-style ashtray through the window. There was a blood trail that led up Ninth Street, through an alley and into the public parking lot on Eighth Street, Russell said.

Steamboat Springs Police Officer Dale Coyner, who supervised the investigation, confirmed police are checking with emergency room personnel at Yampa Valley Medical Center to see if they treated anyone for lacerations within a time frame that matched up with the crime.

"We're exploring that possibility," Coyner said, but no conclusive information has been obtained. Coyner said his instincts point to an act of vandalism rather than an attempted burglary.

"This is pure speculation," Coyner said. "But I think it's just a case of vandalism. Still, it's entirely possible that someone was attempting a burglary, suffered a cut and said, 'I've got to get out of here.'"

Coyner pointed out there was also a broken beer bottle on the sidewalk, indicating the perpetrator may have been intoxicated. There was merchandise sitting on a table just inches inside the window, Coyner added, but it was not taken.

Ironically, Russell said, the items on the table were heavily discounted because of their condition. There was a video camera that was not in working order, for example.

There was one other thing that was curious to Russell she had never seen the large ashtray before. It was not standing in front of the shop before the crime took place.

"It's not from a city street," Coyner confirmed. "We think it might be from a condo."


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