The owner of the Korner Store in Hermantown is offering a $5,000 reward leading to the prosecution of the suspect or suspects who broke into the store overnight Thursday and stole more than $6,000 worth of menthol and flavored cigarettes.

“I will pay a large amount of money to find closure and hold somebody accountable,” store owner Derek Medved said. “I worked hard to build this company and we have a good thing going. I want to hold people accountable - you work for what you get, you don’t steal it.”

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The convenience store and gas station is located at 4704 Hermantown Road, bordering the Piedmont Heights neighborhood of Duluth.

Derek Medved
Derek Medved

Medved described the burglary: “Somebody came in and knocked out the front door, broke the whole glass with some rebar. They crawled into the broken door, jumped the counter and loaded up on cigarettes, cartons of cigarettes, cigars. All they took was menthol cigarettes and a bunch of flavored stuff.”

Medved said he’d been in touch with officers from the Hermantown, Duluth and Proctor police departments - all working to locate the suspect(s).

Medved made news in 2015, when as a 20-year-old he took over ownership of the Gary Milk House. He’s since gone on to add two additional stores, including the one in Hermantown. He’s poised to grow further, with an announcement coming in the near future, he said.

He posted news of the burglary on Facebook, describing how he woke up to an alarm at his Hermantown store.

“Kick in my front door, I’m going to be upset,” he told the News Tribune. “But we also have a lot to be thankful for. No employees were here. Nobody was hurt or traumatized. I’m blessed all they got away with was merchandise.”