Alleged theft caught on camera; store owner looking for victim

Alleged theft caught on camera; store owner looking for victim

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A local laundromat owner is hoping someone may be able to identify a victim in order to allow Richmond police to investigate a theft.

Al Bingenheimer, owner of Neighborhood Laundromat on Strawberry Street, said a frequent patron called him Thursday saying she didn't feel safe in the laundromat after an uncomfortable situation Wednesday afternoon.

"I went back and I watched the surveillance video and what I saw was a customer and her family acting a little erratic and ultimately stealing customer's [wallet]," Bingenheimer said. "She said they were asking for money and if someone said no to the money they would yell, I can't believe you won't feed a child!"

The business has several surveillance cameras inside the building out of caution for situations like this.

According to Bingenheimer, the victim in the crime has not contacted him.

Bingenheimer tried to file a report with Richmond Police, but because of department protocol, officers need the victim in the crime to file the report in order to start an investigation.

Bingenheimer hopes someone will be able to identify the victim in this theft so she can come forward and file a police report.

"One of the things I do is try and maintain a safe, clean environment for my customers, and I want to make sure they feel safe," Bingenheimer said.

In the surveillance video captured Wednesday around 4:15 p.m. you can see the victim set her keys, wallet and cell phone on top of a washer.

"As soon as she looks away [the customer] grabs that [wallet] in that split second and the rest is history," Bingenheimer said.

This isn't the first time Bingenheimer has had issues at his laundromat.

In October a man was arrested for petit larceny after he was accused of stealing women's underwear from a washing machine.

Bingenheimer said he tries to keep his customers as safe as possible, but does want to reminder people of safety measures.

"We still live in a city," he said. "Even though it's 'The Fan' or the 'Museum District' we still have to maintain situational awareness. Keep an eye on what's going on around you and keep your possessions in hand."

Anyone who recognizes the victim is asked to contact Bingenheimer.

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