Video gaming machines are being targeted by thieves in the Metro East.

At this point, police don’t know exactly how much money the thieves have made off with or if all these instances are connected.

“These thieves know that this is a big business and they’re targeting it,” says Detective Danny Allison with the Caseyville Police Department.

Police say the Caseyville Inn, as well as the Full Moon Saloon, have been hit as well as establishments in Belleville and Fairmont. And the list seems to be growing.

“You need to have alarms, you need to have battery backups, you need to contact your alarm company and make sure they have the proper numbers to call the police,” said Allison.

Det. Danny Allison says if thieves cut power to your cameras or alarm system it may not trigger the alarm so it’s important to have battery backups.

Police say a high-quality video that uploads to a cloud is also extremely helpful in these cases especially if thieves swipe the in-house recording devices.

“These thieves are sophisticated. They’re wearing gloves, they’re wearing masks so we’re trying to use every single tool in our toolbox to catch these people,” says Allison.

These machines are not necessarily owned by the establishment that they’re in. Police say some video gaming companies offer some reimbursement for safety measures taken. If you’d like the police to take a closer look at your system they say they’re more than willing to come out.