Thanks to some alert kids playing ball in an apartment parking lot on Saturday, Ada Police Department is in possession of a stolen ATM machine.
Whether it’s the same ATM that was stolen in a swift and daring theft from an Ada Walgreens store in the early morning hours of Dec. 21 remained unclear as of Monday.
A manager at the Walgreens store on Arlington Street declined to comment on the discovery, referring a reporter to an 800 number to corporate headquarters.
As of press time, no one at that number had returned calls from The Ada News.
The damaged ATM was recovered in a ravine near South Mississippi and the Sleepy Hollow Apartments.
According to police reports, two youths were playing with a round rubber ball when it rolled into the ravine.
When the kids went after it, they saw that an ATM machine had been left there. There was also a van which had been parked in that area for several weeks.
According to witnesses, at first the van was seen with one of its doors still open. Later, the door was closed and the van appeared to have been moved.
Further investigation showed the van to have been stolen in Ardmore. An address on the ATM machine was also from Ardmore.
ATMs at several stores in southern Oklahoma had been reported stolen in recent weeks.
While this was obviously one of them, as of Monday it hadn’t been identified as the Ada ATM taken from the drug store.
That heist, some of which was captured on video tape, showed at least two individuals with their faces covered prying open a glass door, lassoing the ATM with a heavy chain and pulling its bolts out of the floor. Afterward, it was believed to have been loaded into a vehicle.
That part wasn’t captured by the store’s video equipment.
The heist, from beginning to end, lasted only about 45 seconds.
In the surveillance video, one of the suspects — wearing a mask and gloves — entered the store and appeared to wrap a chain around the ATM.
The suspect then exited the store and moments later, the ATM bolts were pulled out of the floor and the machine was yanked through the front doors.
An undisclosed amount of money was in the machine at the time of the theft.