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Police: Coin Machine Bandit behind bars

PHOENIX — The elusive Coin Machine Bandit, accused of stealing 27 coin dispensers, has been arrested by Phoenix police.

Bryan Simon, 31, is accused of entering Circle K stores across the city with the intention of stealing change dispensers.

“From July 2012 through November 2012, he did 12 of these robberies, and then took about a five- to six-month hiatus,” said Phoenix Police Officer James Holmes.

Simon’s alleged crime spree resumed in July of this year.

“He did another total of 15 of these coin thefts,” Holmes added.

Simon was arrested July 30. He admitted to being involved and said he used the money to support his drug habit. Police estimate he stole about $17,000.

This arrest is part of an on-going crack down dubbed “Operation Beer Garden.” Detectives from the Phoenix Police Business and Economic Stability Team are attempting to track down at least 60 suspects who routinely rob convenience stores.

Last week, they announced the capture of the Jordan Newman, who was termed by police as the “Candy Man.” He is being accused of shoplifting nearly $3,000 worth of candy and selling it on the street to pay for a drug habit.


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