CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Chesterfield laundromat owner is looking for answers after one of his customers stole a candy vending machine from the business.
Albert Bingenheimer told 8News he’s frustrated by the whole situation. He believes the person responsible has been in the laundromat plenty of times before. And to make matters worse, the vending machine was his daughter’s business that he helped her start when she was younger.
“I’m just trying to get it back,” Bingenheimer said.
The incident happened around 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 24. Security camera video shows a man casually walking up to the vending machine — filled with candy — picking it up and walking out the door.
Bingenheimer says he recognizes the individual in the video as a regular customer. Earlier that night, the same surveillance video shows the man doing laundry with a woman Bingenheimer says is his mother.
“They’re patrons I see here almost weekly,” Bingenheimer said.
According to Bingenheimer, his vending machine — which he estimates is valued around $1,000 — sat in the same space in the laundromat for three years. He says the machine was part of a legacy he was building for his daughter.
“I tried to raise her to know there are other ways to make money. You don’t have to sit there and wait for your paycheck,” Bingenheimer said. “She started this business when she was still in elementary school.”
Brooke Bingenheimer, 17, says this is her first time experiencing a business loss because of theft.
“I had these machines at Robious and now one is gone. And I’m a little disappointed in that because I spent some of my revenue from my other machines on that. And I worked really hard to put those in there,” she said. “What I really hope for is that they find kindness in their heart to return it … I would love to just get my machine back and maybe bolt it into the floor this time.”
Bingenheimer says he has filed a report with the Chesterfield County Police Department but hopes the customer will come forward on their own.