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Litter patrol finds ATM stolen in November

Virginia Department of Transportation employees picking up litter on Highway 58 east of Riverdale Thursday morning discovered the top cover of what appeared to be an ATM machine and notified authorities.

Sheriff Fred Clark and investigators with the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene and conducted a search of a wooded area near the side of the road where the ATM top cover was found.

According to Clark, the rest of the ATM machine that had been stolen from Gene’s Orange Market in November was recovered about 75 to 100 yards down in the woods located across the road from the dentist office on Highway 58.

“No money was in it, of course,” said Clark, adding, thieves had managed to break into the machine.

Authorities collected the evidence for further examination that might lead to identifying the suspects as the investigation continues, the sheriff said.

It was shortly after 2:30 on Tuesday morning, Nov. 20, when two or more thieves backed a pickup truck through the front entrance of Gene’s Orange Market and helped themselves to the ATM located inside the store.

The dispatch center was notified at 2:39 a.m. an alarm was going off at Gene’s Orange Market located on Highway 58 (Philpott Road) just west of Riverdale in South Boston.

Storeowner Gene Morris and deputies arrived on the scene within a few minutes of the alarm sounding, Clark said, to find brazen thieves had backed a pick up truck through the front doors of the store, stolen the ATM machine and fled the scene.

A store video captured the entire event.

Then several weeks later, thieves struck a country store in northern Halifax County knocking out the front doors and stealing an ATM containing an undisclosed amount of money.

This time the culprits struck Country Express store in Nathalie, authorities said, pulling the electric meter from its mount at the convenience store located on L. P. Bailey Memorial Highway in Volens.

After successfully disabling the electricity to the store, the culprits then used a vehicle to break open the doors to the store.

Once inside, authorities said they apparently used a chain to pull the ATM from the store. 

As authorities continue their investigations into the two ATM thefts, anyone with information is asked to contact the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office at 434-476-3339.