HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – It’s already hard enough running a business but as the price of nearly everything has risen, the last thing needed is a robbery.
Just three months into 2023, the Smokey Hub vape store on Central Ave. in Hot Springs has been the subject of multiple robberies.
The robberies have resulted in thousands of dollars in damage and stolen product.
The business has been broken into 6 total times, two times in 2022 and four more in 2023. All were captured on surveillance video.
The most recent burglary happened on February 4. The video shows the robbers shattering the glass of the main door. They were soon stopped in their tracks when realizing the main door was barred.
Unable to get through the front door the robbers used a rock to smash through the side window.
Dawn Muschkat works at the Smokey Hub. She said their Central Ave. location has been open for nearly a year and a half.
“It’s really bad. I’ve been in Hot Springs for 13 years and the crime has gone through the roof,” Muschkat said.
The Smokey Hub has another store on Airport Road in Hot Springs which has also become a victim to burglary.
More cameras and metal bars have been added to both locations. “They’d be stupid to try to do it now,” Muschkat said.
We got in touch with the owner Ron Imran, and he says the robberies have cost him over 30 thousand dollars in repairs and stolen products.
Costing him thousands of dollars alone just to fix the window each time it shatters.
The Hot Springs Police Department said they have arrested a juvenile in relation to the February 4 robbery. They said this suspect may be the same person who broke into this business on January 8.
“This young generation is something else,” Muschkat said.
If you recognize anyone from the footage, give the police department a call.