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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Crooks were caught on camera trying to steal from a South Kansas City company that’s been in business for 30 years.

The thieves were unsuccessful after being scared off by a security alarm, but they caused hundreds of dollars in property damage at the Truck Trailer & Hitch Center on Hickman Mills Drive.

“You just try to figure out how a person can even think to do something like this,” said employee Leon Dixon. “Like, what would really push them to do it?”

The business’ surveillance cameras show intruders driving a white van right through a security gate and toward a 24-foot trailer that belonged to a customer who had dropped it off for repairs. The thieves then tried to hook the trailer to their van.

“They can probably use that to steal or store the things they’ve been stealing,” Dixon guessed of the targeted trailer.

Little did the crooks know, the gate they busted through was rigged with an alarm that soon started blasting throughout the parking lot.

“It goes off,” Dixon said, “so I’m figuring that`s why the hurried and scurried out of there like that.”

Spooked, the trespassers took off without their prize, but left behind hundreds of dollars in property damage.

“Life cannot be that bad that you would put another person in that kind of a predicament where they would have to spend money to repair something that they worked so hard to really build,” Dixon said of the damage.

But with 24 different surveillance cameras on the property, the evidence is clear and Dixon thinks “it’s only a matter of time before they get caught.”

He also hopes that when they do get caught, they leave their life of crime behind.

“The only thing you can do is really pray,” he said, “and hope that they come to a point in their life where they recognize that they cannot continue in that way, they have to change after a while.”

If you recognize the man or van in the surveillance video, call Crime Stoppers at (816) 474-TIPS.