Sewing machine business robbed in South County – St. Louis Call Newspapers

By Erin Achenbach
Staff reporter

A South County sewing machine business was robbed in the early hours of Saturday morning and police are still looking for the suspects responsible.

The Heyde sewing machine company, 5451 S. Lindbergh Blvd., was burglarized on the night of June 15.

Two suspects got away with two sewing machines worth $20,000 each.

One of the types of sewing machines the two suspects stole from Heyde Sewing Machine Company on Saturday June 15. Karen Warren, owner of Heyde Sewing, said the suspects failed to take the necessary accessories to make the machines work, essentially rendering the machines useless. . Photo by Erin Achenbach.

Karen Warren, the owner of Heyde Sewing, said she was contacted by police around 8.45am that morning after police were told by a driver driving past the store that one of the store’s windows had been smashed .

The suspects first attempted to enter through one of the front windows, but as this window is made of tempered glass, they were unsuccessful. Instead, they smashed a side window facing Concord Village Avenue.

The suspects broke into the store around 4 a.m., according to security footage from the store. Only two sewing machines, each about 100 pounds, were stolen, a total loss of $40,000.

“These are top-of-the-line machines,” Warren said. “The thieves must have known what they were looking for, because anyone who wasn’t a sewer wouldn’t have known it’s a top-of-the-line machine and it costs so much.”

Warren said the suspects would not be able to sell the machines for what they are worth because security footage showed them dropping the machines multiple times.

The suspects also failed to carry the necessary accessories for the sewing machines, rendering the machines essentially useless.

“My opinion is that whoever stole it was someone who wanted to start an embroidery business and realized, ‘I can’t do this…I have to find a $20,000 machine'” , Warren said. “It was really stupid of them. Why not steal some money and buy a machine?

Police reviewed security footage of the store from last week to see if they noticed anyone suspicious, but that’s all Warran said he knew.

They believe the thieves must have inspected the inside of the store beforehand, as they knew exactly where to go to find the machines in the dark while the store was being robbed.

Detectives had yet to provide the security footage to The Call at the time of this article’s publication. Click on here to view security footage.

Warren has already replaced the machines that were stolen, using new machines from her inventory that she intended to sell eventually. The machines that were stolen were floor models, used for customer demonstrations.

In addition, each stolen sewing machine has its own serial number and its own code in the machine. Since the suspects dropped the machines multiple times during the robbery, they likely won’t work without being repaired.

A screenshot of security footage from the flight at Heyde Sewing Machine Company. A suspect is visible at the bottom left of the screen. Image courtesy of KMOV 4.

But the network of dealers who repair types of stolen machines is small, and dealers will be able to tell if a machine brought in for repair is among the stolen machines based on its serial number.

Heyde Sewing Machine Company has been a fixture in South County since 1950. Warren and her husband bought the store 25 years ago.

The St. Louis County Police Department’s Burglary Unit is investigating the incident. Anyone with information is asked to contact investigators at 314-615-5400.

To remain anonymous or potentially receive a reward, contact CrimeStoppers at 1-866-371-TIP (8477).

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