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Locker room larceny a recurring problem across metro area

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) - Metro police say a string of thefts are popping up at local gyms, as the thieves are sneaking into locker rooms and stealing valuables.

However, several police departments say they may have a lead on who’s behind the crime, with several surveillance videos as evidence.

“They don't expect for someone to steal their stuff when working out,” Michael Parks said. “The only belongings I bring in can fit in my pocket.”

Bethany PD released photos on Wednesday of a man wearing headphones and a towel staking out the YMCA on Mueller Avenue.

Investigators say he was spotted sifting through lockers and swiping valuables after sneaking past the receptionist.

Nichols Hills Police Department officials say another YMCA was hit downtown.

The victim stopped by for a lunchtime sweat session.

“It wasn’t a simple smash and grab,” detective Brandon Ridgeway from the Nichols Hills Police Department said.

Instead, the thief had a plan, allegedly following the victim inside the locker room.

When the coast was clear, he grabbed the man’s keys from his locker.

“Then [he] went out to the parking lot and got into the victim’s vehicle,” Detective Ridgeway said.

After stealing the man’s credit cards, the thief returned to the gym and put the keys back in place.

The victim would have never known anything was up; that is until a weird notification popped up on his phone.

Six-thousand dollars were spent at Best Buy with his credit card.

Police want to talk to a different man sporting slacks, a golf hat and a button down.

Nichols Hills police say several other departments like Edmond and Oklahoma City are also investigating similar locker room thieves.

Detectives are unsure if they are connected or if multiple thieves have the same idea.

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