Skip Bertsch says his business location on D Street is the sweet spot. Skip’s Marysville Music Café is one of a number of small, local businesses situated in the brick buildings that line the busy downtown street.
But his tune has started to change in the past few months after a number of burglaries in the area.
Just last week, four suites located above his business in the 300 block of D Street were ransacked overnight, with the culprit(s) reportedly getting away with an undisclosed amount of cash and computers.
“The potential for that area is amazing, something just needs to be done to figure out how to resolve some of these other issues,” Bertsch said.
The recent burglary occurred sometime last Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. Bertsch said the suspect apparently accessed an unsecured window from the alleyway behind the businesses by climbing a ladder to the building’s roof. Once inside, the suspect ransacked several offices after kicking in their doors. The Marysville Police Department said the damage totaled about $2,500.
Bertsch’s shop wasn’t harmed during the incident. He believes it’s because he has an alarm system set up, but his neighbors weren’t as lucky.
“The people I share the building with work so hard to create something great for the community, yet we feel violated. They may not have taken a huge amount from us this time, but if it had been a different situation, they could have easily backed up a truck and loaded out that warehouse,” he said. “We feel like we are walking on pins and needles because we don’t know how to handle this.”
While nothing has been confirmed, Bertsch said he and a few other business owners familiar with the situation believe the burglary was done by a transient – one of the many that frequent the area. That same transient was caught on camera a few months ago stealing from Skip’s and was reportedly seen a few weeks ago loitering around the suites upstairs.
“I’m finally to the point where I feel like I can’t trust anymore,” Bertsch said. “This whole thing has been frustrating. We are trying to pour everything we have into this community to make the downtown area an awesome place, but we just keep getting hit with one thing after another.”
David Collins, who runs Collins Law Firm out of the building that was burglarized, said the only thing that stopped the culprit(s) from ripping him off as well was a reinforced door. He said many of the shops downtown aren’t making a large profit, so any sort of theft or loss can have significant consequences.
“Unfortunately, we have seen an increase in transient traffic down here,” Collins said. “For us, our concern is with how the suspects were so brazen – they were here kicking in doors, obviously making a lot of noise and didn’t have any concern. Now, we have to increase the security of the building. We can’t wait around for others to solve the problem. Law enforcement is already stretched so thin.”
Bertsch closed his store for the week. A sign on the front door sarcastically reads “Thank you to those who broke into our building.” He plans to reopen on Monday, but he’s still up in the air on whether he wants to continue at that location or move somewhere else where there isn’t the same type of issues with crime and transient foot traffic.
“We’ll do everything we can to get back up and running. We will change the locks on the doors, but based on what has been going on, it may be smarter for us just to move to Plumas Street in Yuba City where there is a lot more exposure and people can’t get away with something like this,” Bertsch said.
Anyone with information about the recent burglary or potential suspects is encouraged to contact the Marysville Police Department at 749-3900.
“We didn’t get hugely hit this time around, but our hearts go out to the other businesses that did. It is still our building, still our people we care about, and we don’t want to see this stuff happen to them. It’s heartbreaking to see them go through that. They are good people.”