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Baldwin fireworks store burglarized
Fireworks are in high demand this time of year and it seems one group of men may have taken things just a little too far.
Five men from Mobile are now in custody in Baldwin County after investigators say they were attempting to steal fireworks, loading them into a truck at a fireworks store off Interstate 10.
It was a rough night for the folks at Shelton Fireworks off Interstate 10. Around 2 a.m. the owner made a surprising discovery.
"He actually was going there to the business and stumbled upon these people breaking into his business," said Major Anthony Lowery with the Baldwin County Sheriff's Office.
Those people, investigators say, are these five men all from Mobile. The owner caught them red handed loading fireworks into a box truck in the parking lot.
"They began a short pursuit and the driver actually ran away and the deputy was able to take the other four men into custody," said Lowery.
Investigators say that driver who ran away and was later arrested is 38-year-old Demetrius Prince.
All five now face a charge of burglary and receiving stolen property.
"There were burglar tools in the car. The fireworks were being loaded into the stolen box truck," said Lowery.
Nearby at Fireworks World owners say they saw the same five men checking their store out on Friday.
"I do think that they do case out our businesses and see what's going on but they see all the security and people walking around and sooner or later they say okay, let's go," said Fireworks World store owner Gayle Witherington said.
But owners say these five men came back. "There was three or four of them, then more of them came in. Some stayed, others walked back out and got in the car and waited. Two or three stayed here the whole time," said Marcus Wiley who works at Fireworks World.
All the men have prior criminal records in Mobile County. They've mostly been arrested for misdemeanors this time investigators say they may have gone too far. Business owners along the interstate agree.
"To me when someone walks back out and gets in a truck that's running and they are with a group it kind of draws my attention," said Witherington.
No one was hurt during the incident. The manager at Shelton Fireworks gave credit to the Baldwin County Sheriff's Office for a job well done.
All five men were in custody within 30 minutes after he called 911.