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Local paintball shop burglarized within 24 hours of grand opening

Black Ops Paintball store owner, Nathaniel Gienger, says they were robbed early Sunday morning. He says the thieves broke their front door, which is now temporarily replaced, and made off with more than $4,000 worth of merchandise (Liz Cooper/WPDE

The owner of Black Ops Paintball on Socastee Boulevard in Horry County said a group of thieves targeted them early Sunday morning.

Nathaniel Gienger said it happened less than 24 hours after their grand opening.

"It looks like they were trying to take this whole plate glass out," he said as he pointed at part of their front window.

He said his landlord called him around 7:30 a.m. letting him know they had been burglarized. The front door of his shop was shattered from top to bottom.

"They shattered the door, went through and then unlocked the back," he explained. "It hurts pretty bad I'm just grateful they didn't steal more."

Gienger said the thieves got away with more than $4,000 worth of merchandise.

"There was a sniper rifle on that glass case and then this whole wall was full of air soft guns and now there's only four or five left," he said, as he pointed to the wall shelves that are now nearly empty where the guns were hanging.

But luckily for him, his store's security cameras captured the suspects.

An Horry County police report states that three unknown males wearing hoodie sweatshirts enter the store around 1:10 a.m. and remove multiple items.

The night vision security camera shows a group of thieves scrambling to empty shelves within just a few moments.

"You already get pistols?" asks one suspect in the video. "Yup," another answers. Then you hear them rushing to get the job done. "Hurry up. Hurry up. Hurry up. Hurry up. Hurry up," said another suspect.

"They knew exactly what they were looking for," said Gienger, as he talked about the video. He said he even recognizes one of the people in the video and saying how that person was in their store the day before for the grand opening.

Gienger said the suspects tried to get through the back door at first.

"It looks like they hit this with a crowbar," he said, as he showed the marks and bent frame of the door. "I don't think we are dealing with real intelligent individuals."

Gienger and his manager said they're store is beneficial to the community. They said paintball gives kids something to do, and is an outlet to stay out of trouble. They said they have a message for the thieves.

"You're ruining the community. You're ruining paintball for everybody. You're ruining air soft for everybody. It's heartbreaking," said McDaniels.

Gienger said all of the guns have serial numbers so they're hopeful to get them back. Despite taking this hit after just opening, he's refusing to allow this to force him to close up shop.

"I'm a combat veteran. We don't get up easily," said Gienger.

It's a battle of justice he plans to see til the end.

Horry County police are still investigating.

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