NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Professional burglars targeted at least a half dozen businesses and have stolen thousands of dollars. One jewelry store owner said the burglars almost wiped her out.
On a Sunday morning in May, the burglar alarm went off at Gossage Jewelers in South Nashville, but everything seemed to be okay.
"I thought, well okay, I guess it's just one of those fluke alarm things like you get," said burglary victim Lesa Cart.
Everybody went home, and then Monday morning they saw something different.
"We saw glass everywhere where they'd knocked out the doors to the showcases, and raked what was left out of the showcases," said Cart.
Thieves had cut through the roof to get into the building. They took the jewelry, and then they used a torch and cut a hole in the safe.
"Of course that's where you put most of your things and most valuable things," said Cart.
Cart said in her store the thieves left very little behind. They even took the surveillance tapes.
"They just really know how to cover their tracks and left no clues," said Cart.
Metro police said the Gossage Jewelers burglary appears to be tied to several others in Nashville.
"These guys are what we would consider pretty much professionals, especially due to the businesses they're hitting," said Randy Alexander, Metro police department.
They also hit a safe at the Nashville Zoo. Police said they broke into the facility and stayed pretty much invisible.
In some cases the thieves have been caught on tape. In the burglary of Advance Financial in Antioch, the burglars covered their faces.
"They're disabling the alarm systems and using cutting torches on some. They're using saws on others, so they know what they're doing," said Alexander.
Police believe the group is responsible for a string of safe burglaries including ones at Advance Financial, Nashville Shores, Gossage Jewelers, Rent A Centers in North and South Nashville, the Nashville Zoo and Berry's Pawn Shop.
Police said they have no leads, but they believe sooner or later the thieves will make a mistake.
If you can help police solve these crimes call Crime Stoppers at 74-CRIME. You can also text Crime Stoppers anonymously, text the word CASH, and your message to CRIMES.