In the dead of the night at the Riverpark Shopping Center in Sugar Land, Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen suffered its first break-in since its opening in July 2018.
Now, many Gringo’s restaurants in the Houston area have hired police officers to patrol the premise nightly.
Last Wednesday, the criminals shattered the glass to-go room door at 1:26 a.m. They crawled into the deserted establishment, busted through the locked office door, swung open the heavy-duty safe and — within a few minutes — peeled off with a stash of cash and gift cards purchased as employee sales incentives.
Unfortunately, the Sugar Land location has not been the first of the Tex-Mex chain to suffer from break-ins.
With similar vehicle descriptions of a Chrysler Sedan at each crime scene, the Sugar Land Police Department and franchisee Kevin Carroll are almost certain there is a pattern behind the robberies.
“They had hit a few other Gringo’s before the Sugar Land store,” Carroll explained. “During the time of Wednesday’s break-in, the Stafford location had a police officer in the parking lot, so we think that they just drove off to the next one.”
Carroll, who also franchises the Rosenberg location, is now utilizing preventative measures at both locations to deter the thieves from continuing to target the local chain.
“We’ve changed our procedures to mitigate losses,” Carroll commented. “What we’re doing now until further notice is hiring police officers to stay in patrol cars in the parking lot at night.”
Thankfully, the thieves’ breaking-and-entering took place after the guests and employees had vacated so nobody was injured.
“I’m just grateful it was after hours and nobody was there because people’s safety is more important than anything,” Carroll expressed. “Property can be replaced.”