Yoga boutique employees ‘glad’ garbage bag-wearing burglar interrupted before causing ‘hefty’ damage

ST. GEORGE — Police say a man wearing black plastic garbage bags burglarized and stole money from a business in downtown St. George early Monday morning.

Broken window at the rear of the Downtown Yoga building at the Awakened Soul Center, 50 E. Tabernacle St., St. George, Utah, where an early morning burglary was reported July 1, 2019 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

Police were called to Awakened Soul Downtown Yoga, 50 E. Tabernacle Street, shortly after 4 a.m., when a yoga instructor arrived at work to find the man standing inside the boutique shop near the cash register.

St. George Police officer Tiffany Atkin said the man gained entry to the building by using a rock to break a rear window. He reportedly took the cash box with him and fled out the back window, the same way he had entered. The empty cash box, minus the $300 or so it reportedly had contained, was later located nearby by police.

Awakened Soul Center employee Savanah Simmons, whose mother Joni Simmons owns and manages the business, said the instructor described the suspected thief as being white, medium to stocky build, approximately 6 feet tall, with no facial hair.

“He was wearing a garbage bag over him, had holes for his arms. He had it wrapped around his hair and then tied in the back so you could only see his face,” Savanah Simmons said, relating the description provided by the instructor.

Police do not yet have any suspects in the case.

Downtown Yoga at the Awakened Soul Center, 50 E. Tabernacle St., St. George, Utah, where an early morning burglary was reported July 1, 2019 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

Store employees said there did not appear to be anything else taken besides the cash box. Other than the broken window, there was little damage done to the inside of the building, although police did kick open a door to a locked storage room thinking the suspect might have been hiding inside. 

Owner Joni Simmons said she was glad nobody was injured in the incident and that damage was minimal.

“I’m so grateful no one was hurt and that the intruder was interrupted before he had much more time in my space,” she told St. George News Monday afternoon. “Many thanks to the police as well, for acting so quickly, and several hurrying to search the area for the intruder.”

“Being broken into brings up many emotions … fear, security, loss, overstepping boundaries and being violated, especially in a space of love and gratitude, where the community is brought together regularly to assist one another in this awakening journey,” Joni Simmons added. “This brings one to question, ‘Is there a deeper meaning?'”

“I have always felt safe and protected in this peaceful high-vibe space,” she added. “Many come here to soak in these good vibes here. Today, I feel a little sad but, all in all, very grateful for the love and support of so many.”

Any businesses in the area who may have street surveillance footage from around 4 a.m. on July 1, or anyone who may have seen someone wearing garbage bags around that time, is asked to call St. George Police Department and reference case number 19P016359.

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Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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