CHICAGO – The video shows a woman searching the halls of 4001 N. Ravenswood, the home of Chicago photography classes.
Inside the building is FreshLens Chicago, a studio and nonprofit aimed at teaching photography to young people.
The woman eventually leaves the building and appears to hold the door for a man with a bicycle, captured on surveillance video at 4:12 a.m. July 30.
In seven minutes, he opens the door of the association using a burglary tool.
“He walks away with a full bag,” said Shirley Nannini, executive director and founder of FreshLens Chicago.
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The thief got away with gear worth over $10,000.
“I realized a set of cameras had been stolen. Fifteen Sony DSLR cameras, then they stole other lenses, my hard drive, then the new lens hard drive,” said Nannini.
Naninni created the Children’s Photography Program in 2017. Since then, 175 children from all over Chicago have come to the North Side to take classes to learn what it takes to capture the perfect photo.
“We needed three sets of cameras to hold so many programs,” Naninni said. “Fortunately, two of the sets were out with children. The third set was stolen, which means we can’t serve that many children.”
On several surveillance cameras, you see the thief rummaging through the drawers.
To add insult to injury, he is captured returning to fly again four days later. The thief, this time, got nothing.
Now the program director is hoping someone recognizes the man.
The organization’s GoFundMe has raised over $10,000.
Chicago police are investigating.