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Help identify bizarre burglar who targeted VFW

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HAWK POINT, Mo. – A burglar struck Hawk Point VFW Post 7560 on the morning of New Year’s Eve and may have attempted to cover his tracks with a fire.

“Why pick on the VFW?” Quartermaster Mike Norman said. “He walked with a crowbar in one hand; gas can in the other hand.”

Surveillance video shows his face is mostly covered with a bandana, but his unique hoodie may give him away. It appears to be a Hard Rock Café zip-up, picturing a guitar with wings.

He reportedly hit five machines, with about $800 in each one. From the video, it looks like he knew exactly what he was doing, striking each machine in a spot that appeared to pop out the cash container.

“He had to have been here before,” Norman said. “He knew how to get into the games.”

Police believe the burglar may have intended to burn the place down, a move that appears to have left the biggest clue.

“To get in, he went in through this door, but the key thing we found out here is he left a lighter on the ground. It wasn’t just a normal Bic lighter. It was a torch lighter with the logo DJEEP,” Sgt. Paul Rinck, Hawk Point Police Department, said.

It’s now in for DNA lab testing.

“Why do you want to burn the VFW down?” Norman said. “We’re a nonprofit. All we do is support the community. There’s a chance we paid his electric bill one time, because we do that.”

If you think you’ve seen the suspect or recognize the hoodie or lighter, do not hesitate to call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Special Investigations Unit at 636-528-8546 (ext. 5).

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