Illegal dumpers target small thrift store in Wentzville

WENTZVILLE, MO - Illegal dumpers have repeatedly dropped off trashed items in the parking lot of a small thrift store in Wentzville and store employees say it's costing them big bucks.

"The dumping just seems to be an issue and I think that everyone is tired of it and it's just irresponsible" said Mary Martha Thrift Store President, Linda Adams.

"We just keep going and doing the best we can because we're all volunteers" said Kay McQuate.

Monday morning, Adams says a load of broken furniture and trashed items were left in the parking lot outside of the donation bins.

"There were soiled mattresses and box springs, trashed boxes that were empty, furniture that was broken in pieces, just all pushed off the back of a truck and piled here... there was nothing in it that was usable" she said.

Adams says there's a fine line between a usable donation and a trash dump.  She says what was left in her parking lot was a dump and it cost the store money to have it all removed.  Money, Adams says the store simply doesn't have to throw away and money she says should be going to the many community organizations the store supports.

"It hurts us as a business and it hurts our workers" Adams said.  "I mean it hurts our workers to try to tote this stuff around and break it down enough to get it into the garbage.  It's very cumbersome" she said.

"What's frustrating is people want to get rid of their problem by dumping it on somebody else and that's what they did in this case" said Wentzville Mayor Nick Guccione.

Guccione says this isn't the first-time illegal dumpers have done this and he's working to increase police patrols to catch illegal dumpers and send the message it won't be tolerated.

"There's multiple infractions and laws that they have broken for doing what they did and I would encourage them if they're out there they'll step up and send a check for the damage and they don't do it again" he said.

Adams says she knows other businesses have also been dumped on recently and she's hopeful it stops.

"My hope is that when people see something that is going on that they know is not right, that they'll capture a license plate number or take a picture and let’s try to put a stop to this" said Adams.