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Pilsen, Little Village, West Loop

Alleged Brewery Burglar Busted After Owner Spots Him Near The Scene The Same Day

Police said the 62-year-old man was charged with felony burglary for the Thursday break-in at Midwest Coast Brewery.

Midwest Coast Brewery/Facebook
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NEAR WEST SIDE — Chicago Police have arrested a man they think burglarized Midwest Coast Brewing Company this week and perhaps two other times in recent weeks.

Terrence Coles, 62, of the 2700 block of West Roosevelt Road, was arrested around 6 p.m. Thursday on the 300 block of North Leavitt. He was charged with one one felony count of burglary for the overnight Thursday break-in and may be the same man who burglarized the brewery three times in the last three weeks, officials said.

Coles was out on a personal recognizance bond for a March 1 arrest that happened on the same block. In that case, he was charged with felony burglary and one felony count of receiving, possessing and selling a stolen vehicle. 

Suzie Compton, co-owner of Midwest Coast Brewing, said she was “beyond relieved” that someone was arrested.

Compton said police told her they believe Coles is the same man responsible for the two previous burglaries of Midwest Coast Brewing earlier this month. Asked about that, Chicago Police spokesman Kellie Bartoli said “There are associated cases. That will come out in court.”

Coles was arrested Thursday after Compton saw his car as she was driving home from the brewery and notified police. 

“I saw the same car that was in the surveillance video. He was near the brewery and just idling,” Compton said, adding that the police responded quickly. 

“I’m so relieved because he’s hit other businesses and he was repeatedly coming back to us,” Compton said.

On Friday, Coles, a six-time felon, was released on bond again but put on electronic monitoring by Cook County Circuit Judge Susana Ortiz. He was also ordered not to have any contact with anyone from Midwest Brewing. He is scheduled back in court on March 26.

Because Coles gained entry through a window, Compton said that they were having burglar bars installed and were also planning on going to the police station to see if they could recover some of their stolen property, which included laptops, tools used to fix brewery equipment and brewery merchandise.

On Thursday, Compton estimated the loss and damage at $5,000 to $10,000 and said it comes at a tough time as they are currently still paying staff that is staying home because of the coronavirus shutdown. 

Despite the extra hardship of the burglaries on top of the mandated coronavirus shutdown, Midwest Coast is still paying its staff and is currently selling beer growlers on its website.

“We just got them in this morning and are hoping people continue to support us,” Compton said, adding that she really appreciates the overwhelming support the neighborhood has shown over the last couple of days.

“We humbled, we are grateful. I don’t even know if I can fully articulate how much it revitalized us,” Compton said. “We are very excited to pay it forward.”