Liquor store thefts have familiar flavor |

Liquor store thefts have familiar flavor

An empty spot stood between the window and bottles of Skyy Vodka on the shelf at Big Sids Bottles Monday. Normally, a 1.75-liter bottle of Gordon’s Vodka would be there, but recently the beverage has become popular with thieves.Five times in the past six months someone has broken into Big Sids. The first time, the person threw a rock through the front door, said manager Doug Bernes. The noise of crashing glass must have scared the person off, because the thief didn’t take anything, he said. In the next three burglaries the perpetrator broke the far left window. In two of those, the thief grabbed a bottle of Gordon’s, Bernes said. The same might have happened again Sunday night, had the window not been boarded up from last week’s burglary. Instead, a man threw a rock through the middle window of Big Sids and climbed inside.A Garfield County sheriff’s deputy on patrol near Big Sids stopped across the street after the window had been broken but before a man emerged with a bottle of Gordon’s in his hand. The deputy reported seeing Gregory Beck, 44, of Glenwood Springs, climb out the window, and chased him on foot up 23rd Street. The deputy caught him and had him handcuffed by the time Glenwood Springs Police arrived, said Glenwood Springs Police Chief Terry Wilson. All told, thieves took the Gordon’s in three of the five burglaries, Bernes said. “I think it’s just because of where it is on the shelf,” he said. Big Sids and Beck have a history because of Beck passing checks on closed accounts, said Bernes. Eventually Big Sids banned Beck from the store. Bernes said he hopes the burglaries have stopped at Big Sids. The thieves’ bottle of choice, after all, costs only about $10 – but the cost to replace the windows is significantly more, Bernes said. Not to mention, “we’re sick of getting woken up in the middle of the night,” he said. Police arrested Beck on suspicion of second-degree burglary, theft and criminal mischief. Police aren’t sure if the burglaries are related, yet. Beck was not available for comment on Monday. Contact Ryan Graff: 945-8515, ext.

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