The Ridgway Area Chamber of Commerce sent out a Member Alert on Nov. 6 warning businesses to lock doors and windows and remove cash from their premises overnight.
Investigations are ongoing by both the Ridgway Marshal’s Department and the Ouray Police Department, so details are sketchy.
What is known is that in Ouray, break-ins have occurred at the Beaumont Hotel and at least one private residence. And in Ridgway, burglars have hit Ridgway Outdoor Experience (possibly more than once), Willow Creek Floral and, most recently, Cimarron Books and Coffeehouse. Neither law enforcement agency would speculate on whether the crimes in the two towns were related.
Cimarron’s Priscilla Peters of Cimarron Books said her business was broken into last Thursday night. “It was carelessness on our part,” Peters said. A window had been closed but not locked. “Apparently, he [the perpetrator] really does case people’s windows and either breaks in or opens ones that have accidentally been left unlocked. He just took money,” Peters said. “It’s the first time in 19 years we’ve been robbed.”
Cash was also taken at Willow Creek Floral. A door was forced open at Ridgway Outdoor Experience, according to owner Albert Adams. The burglar got away with cash and a couple of watches.
There is, one business owner told The Watch, “someone of interest” to police in the case, though law enforcement officials in neither town would confirm this.