A man has been breaking into a dental office in South San Francisco and stealing containers of laughing gas.
Surveillance video from the most recent incident on Jan. 25 shows the thief in action as he breaks into the building’s storage room and unscrews the nitrous oxide tanks.
A dental assistant who works in the building said multiple nitrous oxide thefts have occurred there over the past year.
Debora Tatuhahn said the suspect in the video doesn’t look suspicious. He’s wearing a yellow safety vest, goggles, and a beanie.
“He looks really official with that vest on,” she said. “I think if I came down and saw him, I’d be like, “Hey how are you doing?’ I wouldn’t think that he was down here doing something rotten.”
Nitrous oxide is a chemical substance commonly used to sedate patients and can be deadly.
“Nitrous oxide is very potent. Doctors use a mix of it,” Tatuhahn said. “We don’t use pure nitrous oxide. You can die from that. We use oxygen mix. That way you can control it.”
She says the thought of someone stealing the chemical and contaminating the tanks is scary.
“Opening them up and doing something when you know we are using it for our patients,” Tatuhahn said.
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