Spaburglar Has Perfect Plan, But Blows His Cover

illustration of a spa burglar
Paul Stroede

Watching black and white surveillance footage of the robbery, viewers are struck by the rapid, methodical movements of the burglar, reminiscent of Hollywood jewel-caper movies. 

He has a well-considered plan to steal a 500-pound hot tub from Colorado Custom Spas in Denver. He arrives promptly at 5 a.m., quickly hooks up and lays in a sump pump to drain 250 gallons of water, then wrestles the spa onto a perfectly placed spa dolly and walks it to a waiting accomplice with a flatbed truck, loads it up and drives away.

But as in films and real life, nothing ever goes exactly as planned. Just as in the heist movies, the robber sprays the security cameras to conceal his identity and movements, but he must have bought the discount security camera spray-screen knockoff, because it only blurs the picture momentarily and then runs off. He notices this and repeats the application without success.

It’s still low-quality footage, typical of most closed-circuit systems so the facial features of the robber are not clear, but the manner of the thief suggests he had more than just an average criminal’s knowledge of the layout and of spas in general. He looks like a professional spaburglar.

As company president Stan Goodreau told CBS4 in Denver, “They knew exactly what they would find when they got here,” he says. “Every step was pretty well thought out.”

Goodreau has offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of the hot tub or the identity of the hot tub bandit.

Want to see footage of the heist? Click here.

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