CRIME WATCH: Burglar loots Harley dealer as its founder is laid to rest

Publish Date: 
Apr 2, 2013

FRESNO, Calif. – A burglar exploited a sad moment at Mathews Harley-Davidson, breaking into the shop as employees, friends and family were laying the dealership’s founder to rest.

A burglar heaved a boulder through a glass door as the funeral was taking place the morning of March 28. The suspect broke through a fence and then the front door to steal about $6,000 in gear.

Dealership principal Eva Mathews died March 17 at age 90. She and her late husband, Harold, had built the dealership together since 1953. The business moved from Merced to Fresno in 1961.

Security video shows the burglar laying out a sheet and stuffing it full of leather jackets. He got away with $6,000 in three minutes. "The video of our security shows he didn't look around when he came in, like, ‘which way do I go,’ “ Cara Mathews told KFSN. “He was there on a mission. Walked right past the motorcycles and straight to the jackets so I feel that he had been in here before and kinda scoped it out."

Fresno police are analyzing security video and followed a trail of jackets on the ground leading out the dealership door and along the side of the freeway, where police believe he got into a car and drove away.

The dealer has been adding motion detectors and security cameras to the 34 units that were at the business when the burglary occurred.

Posted by Holly Wagner