San Antonio – A local CBD shop owner is asking the community for help with the return of his life savings after someone broke into his small business and stole around $20,000 worth of property.
Backyard Botanicals opened September 2019, but has been rocked by the pandemic.
“We started breaking even, which was good,” said Eric Beals, the co-owner of the shop. “February was the best month, then Covid hit and we were devastated. Unfortunately, businesses like ours weren’t eligible for the paycheck protection loans, so the wind in our sails was gone.”
He said they did everything to stay afloat.
“We went into our savings and reserves and 401′s just to pay the rent to keep our doors open,” Beals said. “Everybody is dealing with this Covid junk. It has affected everybody and to have this happen, it is just one more knife in the wound.”
On Tuesday night, a man broke in through the locked backdoor of their business.
“As fate would have it, I didn’t have my phone on me Tuesday evening around 10:30,” said Beals. “I was getting notifications to my phone that there was motion going on inside. I was watching a movie with my wife falling asleep. It wasn’t until the next morning that we saw the notifications and my heart just dropped.”
Beals believes the man broke in and had a total of three trips loading and unloading things from his shop.
“The third time that he came back, he actually triggered the neighbor’s alarm, which notified the police department and I think that spooked him,” Beals said. “Wednesday, we called police and shared the videos with them. Unfortunately, they believe the suspect is a transient homeless man, which I hope is not the case. I hope someone can see him on the streets or somewhere and provide his identification to law enforcement.”
Beals said the suspect got away with their livelihood.
“We have been homeschooling the kids here at the shop, so he took their desks, their books, laptops, the TV, all of the electronics, the register, the cash bag and terminal,” Beals said. “They got away with just under $20,000 worth of product, inventory and electronics. We had just got a shipment in and were restocking our shelves.”
He was able to make out a little description of the suspect.
“I guess he got cold and went to get a hoodie,” Beals said. “It is the same man with the same shoes, the same gold watch and a tattoo on his forearm. Anything we can share with the public can help. Police did say they had someone in mind so I can only assume they are working hard on this case.”
Beals said he has a little hope that either the suspect will return his property, or the community will step in and help police.
“Just bring the stuff back,” Beals said speaking to the suspect still at large. “This is our lifeblood. This is how we feed our children, and this has been taken from us. All we want to do is continue to work hard as we have been for what we had. As a community, we need to come together and help each other because someone else is going to hurt one day and I will be able to help that person.”
If you have any information, you are urged to call San Antonio police.