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Thieves break into Forsyth County hobby shop, steal $80K in drones

Thieves used a crowbar to break into a family-owned hobby store.

It took two masked men just four minutes to break into a Forsyth County hobby store Saturday night and leave with 15 high-end drones valued at about $80,000.

Atlanta Hobby owner Cliff Whitney watched on his iPad as the men used to a crowbar to break into the shop and then made a beeline toward his most expensive items, Channel 2 Action News reported.

The break-in occurred shortly before midnight, and Whitney believes the men knew exactly what they were doing.

“These are nice high-end drones,” Whitney told Channel 2 Action News. “Fully-equipped, it sells right at about $9,000.”

Surveillance footage obtained by the news station shows the men pull behind the store in a white van. Moments later, they were inside.

It took two men just four minutes  to break into a Forsyth County hobby store Saturday night and leave with 15 high-end drones valued at about $80,000.
It took two men just four minutes to break into a Forsyth County hobby store Saturday night and leave with 15 high-end drones valued at about $80,000.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

“After I cussed and reached over and popped open my iPad, I could easily see on the cameras when the alarm company called me (to tell me) what was going on in the building,” Whitney said. “It just makes you mad. They immediately turned in the proper direction to go to where the drone stuff was — and this was in pitch black.”

The men grabbed 15 drones before turning their attention to four of Whitney’s high-powered telescopes worth about $1,000 apiece.

But that’s not at all.

On the way out, the thieves helped themselves to a Toys For Tots box filled with donated Christmas presents for children.

“For somebody to steal out of your Toys For Tots box is pretty bad,” Whitney said. “Karma will prevail at one time or another.”

The store owner said he has ordered additional drones to keep up with demand during the holiday season. In the meantime, anyone with information about the break-in is asked to call the police.

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