Local business owners repair after string of food cart break-ins - KPTV - FOX 12

Local business owners repair after string of food cart break-ins

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Fox 12’s Most Wanted is on the run after a string of break-ins at a local food cart pod in southeast Portland. 

This comes on the heel of damage at Portland Mercado, another popular food card pod. 

The sounds of deep fryers and griddles are replaced with the sounds of repair work, as business owners at Carts on Foster focus their efforts on rebuilding after a string of break-ins .

“It’s working people, they are living, working hard and it’s not fair,” said Veronyca Gutierrez, who works with her family at the Venezuelan Food Cart.

Veronyca Gutierrez and her family were greeted by a big mess at their family-run Venezuelan food cart, the door broken in, and the inside torn apart.

“They went inside and moved everything. It was trashed inside. Most trucks have lost money because they didn’t have the chance to open today,” Gutierrez said.

The owner of Carts on Foster says this was a bizarre break-in. Whoever was behind this, left bigger ticket items, and instead spent more time damaging doors and windows.

“It makes no sense because there’s only a few pennies to be gained at best. We had ten carts broken into, but not many people lost stuff—it was the damage to the carts that was terrific,” says Steve Woolard, Owner of Carts on Foster.

The break-in comes just a day after a similar scenario, just 20 blocks away where Portland Mercado carts suffered nearly $25,000 in damage, leading some cart owners to believe it could be connected.

“I had heard about the Mercado break-in so I was a little worried. As soon as I got the phone call I knew that is what had happened,” said Lisa Bucci, owner of Bucci Salon.

The locally-owned Bucci Salon is now put on hold.

“It’s heartbreaking to come to work, something you build yourself, and have it just shredded and ripped apart,” Bucci explained.

Now many are left wondering who would commit such a senseless crime, and that's exactly what investigators are trying to figure out.

“It’s terrible for small businesses to get hit like that,” said Bucci.

The owner of Carts on Foster said the pod plans to beef up security efforts, and said they plan to hold a meeting with Portland Mercado to try and join forces to prevent this from happening again.

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