BURLINGTON, Iowa — The owner of a cans and bottles redemption center says her shop has been robbed three times throughout the last month and a half; the theft is causing her to speak out against the perps and be concerned for the future of her business.
"It could happen tonight, I don't know. It could happen tomorrow night," said Stephanie Mowray, owner of Burlington IA Redemption Center.
Mowray says she's owned and operated her business for nearly four years. She buys cans and bottles from residents who drop them off at her shop and them up from businesses around the Burlington area.
From there, various distributors pick-up the cans and bottles from Burlington IA Redemption center and pay Mowray, who says she makes about a 1-cent off each can or bottle.
Mowray says thieves have stolen $500 worth of cans and bottles from her – recyclables she's already paid for, and won't be able to sell to distributors.
"If I don't have any inventory for them to pick-up and pay me to keep going, I'm going to have to close. I don't want to," said Mowray.
She is completely fed-up with the robberies. She says she's running low on cash since the cans and bottles have been taken from her shop.
"This might not be cash money green, but this is cash to me," said Mowray, pointing to a large bin of sorted glass bottles.
Her message for the perps is to knock it off and get a job.
"I think they're just, they're stupid. They're rude."
Mowray plans to open the doors to her business at normal business hours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, but says the recent robberies shrinking her optimism for the future of her business.