Police find two men hiding in Smithfield Target's HVAC system

Police find two men hiding in Smithfield Target's HVAC system

SMITHFIELD – Police found two men hiding in the HVAC system at the Smithfield Target store Tuesday after responding to a report of a breaking and entering.

On Oct. 10, Smithfield police received a call just after midnight for a break and enter in progress at the store, located at The Crossing, 371 Putnam Pike. The alarm company advised that suspects could be seen in the store on video surveillance. Responding officers surrounded the store and a request was sent out to surrounding police agencies for assistance, asthe suspects were still believed to be in the store.

Police from Woonsocket, Lincoln, Johnston, North Providence, and Rhode Island State Police arrived on scene to assist in securing the perimeter of the store and conducting a building search. The Smithfield Fire Department also assisted by providing their ladder truck to get police onto the store’s rooftop.

A search of the interior led police to the roof where two suspects were found hiding in the HVAC system. The investigation revealed that the suspects had cut a hole in the roof, gained entry into the store, pried open the ATM, and took cash from the machine. The suspects then smashed a hole into the wall of CVS Pharmacy located inside Target. The suspects then obtained snatched substances from the pharmacy and attempted to flee, according to police.

Arrested were Liridon Gashi, age 32, of 2300 Olinville Ave., Bronx, New York and Epirot Krasniqi, age 26, of 240 Ocean Parkway, Brooklyn, New York. Both are charged with two counts of breaking and entering of a business, larceny over $1,500, larceny of a controlled substance, possession of burglary tools, crimes against pharmacies, and conspiracy. Police believe other suspects were involved and are investigating similar incidents throughout the region, as the other incidents may be related.