Local restaurant owner frustrated with repeat break-ins
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Surveillance video shows a thief making himself at home at the D.H. Lescombes Winery and Bistro after hours and uninvited.
An executive with the business says they have locations all over New Mexico, but this location is the only one that’s been broken into several times this month.
“I got into this business right after college, I was a college flunky. I didn’t get it,” said Wayne Moore, COO of D.H. Lescombes Family Vineyards.
Moore has been in the restaurant industry for years.
“Started waiting tables in my hometown of Alamogordo, New Mexico, and I’ve been in this industry ever since, and I love it,” said Moore.
While he loves creating an inviting atmosphere at the Lescombes Winery and Bistro in Albuquerque, he hates getting calls about breaks-in and broken windows.
“It’s frustrating, and the average restaurant makes about a nickel for every dollar that’s spent, and I’m not quite sure everybody understands that,” Moore said.
Moore says the location has been broken into three times this month alone. He says a video of one of the break-ins shows the thief in no rush at all.
“We’ve had our windows broken out and multiple windows broken out. We had our pallet lifted and loads of all my wine stolen. So I want to say that was that cost us around $7,000,” said Moore.
He says laptops, cash, among other things were stolen. He says the thieves have been breaking into employee’s cars too.
He adds the restaurant has reached out to police after each break-in, but he says police told them officers couldn’t come because it wasn’t a violent crime.
“I think it weighs on you when you come in, and you’re part of the opening crew, and you’re cleaning up glass,” Moore said.
Moore says he knows Albuquerque police is short-staffed, but still can’t help but feel frustrated.
“They’re not real worried about getting caught. I think the penalty is so low that the price for what they do is they’re gonna get a slap on the wrist, and they’ll be released right back out to do it again,” Moore said.
Moore says the property has beefed up security measures, but these incidents have left him feeling helpless.
“You’re left searching for answers. Like I said, you don’t know, I’m not quite sure what to do,” said Moore.
Moore says he hopes state lawmakers can see how badly these types of crimes are affecting local businesses. He says he hopes to see more accountability for these types of crimes in the future.