SAD: Clint Humphris, Imbil Colonial Butchery owner, is disappointed 10 Imbil shops were broken into.
SAD: Clint Humphris, Imbil Colonial Butchery owner, is disappointed 10 Imbil shops were broken into. Greg Miller

Imbil main street ransacked by thieves

TEN break and enters in Imbil this week look to be professional jobs, according to police.

On Monday night, 10 of 14 shops in Imbil's main street were broken into.

It was believed to be a two-hour job and Imbil Acting Sergeant Bill Greer said the offenders "appeared to know what they were doing".

Cabling to security cameras was cut, a CCTV hard drive was stolen and CCTV cameras were turned away from cash registers.

But nothing else was disturbed - A/Sgt Greer said the only thing taken from each store was cash.

"They were certainly neat and tidy," he said.

A/Sgt Greer said fortunately, the only significant damage done was to shop doors that had been jimmied open.

He said he had been in Imbil 10 years and Monday night's mass break in was the "most significant" he had ever seen.

"Over a year we'd have 10 (break and enters) but not 10 in one night."

The bold thefts were thought to have happened between 10.30pm Monday and 2am Tuesday.

While the alleged burglars made quick work of the many stores, they didn't make themselves completely invisible.

CCTV footage from undisturbed stores caught them on the heist. The footage is being reviewed by police.

A/Sgt Greer said they had several leads.

But in the meantime, he said the Imbil community was getting back on track after the rude shock.

"They are pretty upset, and rightfully so," A/Sgt Greer said. "They're pretty annoyed and offended."

He said it was a significant blow to the tight-knit community and that as a result, police were putting a fair amount of work into the investigation.

Forensic police blanketed the affected businesses on Tuesday, swabbing for fingerprints and assessing crime scenes.

Imbil Colonial Butchery owner Clint Humphris said in the 11½ years he had been at the shop, this was the first time he'd even been targeted.

"We never expected this to happen; it's such a quiet little town," Mr Humphris said. "It really took us by surprise. I was really disappointed at the time."

But it was back to business for the butcher Tuesday morning. He said he was fortunate nothing else was taken and no other damage was done.

"There was no vandalism or anything like that ... if they wanted to, they really could have (done some damage).

"They were just after cash; they searched for it and found our float.

"They didn't take anything else."

Mr Humphris said he had since installed better locks at the business and "upped the security".