JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. — A man is under arrest for stealing tens of thousands of dollars worth of video games, silver, cash and a gun from the Trade-N-Games video store near Fenton.
Damon Jackson, 46, of St. Louis, was charged with felony stealing and burglary, according to a news release from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department.
Jackson is accused of stealing what the store's owner Jason Brassard said was more than $90,000 worth of rare video games.
"Things are becoming quite collectible," Brassard said of video games like the ones he has collected over the past 25 years.
The stolen games include “Air Raid,” which was valued at more than $4,000. "Air Raid" was released in 1982 for the Atari 2600 and published by a company called Men-A-Vision, the only game released by the company.
Police said Jackson also stole $17,000 in silver, $10,000 in cash and a handgun, which were all inside a safe.
The incident happened on Aug. 16, 2019. A Jefferson County sheriff's deputy responded to Trade-N-Games because an alarm was sounding, according to a probable cause statement. The front window was damaged.
The stolen items were stored in a safe in the office and the safe also was missing, according to the statement.
In November 2019, a woman and Jackson tried to sell six video games to Grumpy Bob's Emporium in Maryville, Illinois. The employee was suspicious and did not make the transaction, according to the statement. Instead, the employee alerted Trade-N-Games.
The woman tried to sell several more video games at stores in Union, Imperial and St. Louis County. Several of the games were recovered, but many more are still missing or were recovered damaged, said Brassard.
"I'd almost, some of them would rather be gone than see them in the condition they're in," he said describing how one game went from a value of several hundred dollars to around $60 after it was returned out of its original packaging and damaged.
Brassard said his passion for collecting is as much about sharing what he has discovered and preserved as it is about his business. Thousands watch his YouTube videos and he has even written a book on the value of collectible games.
And, despite the break-in, he said he won't stop publicly sharing the collection he has amassed, saying he will "keep going with sharing" while hoping the ongoing investigation may yield more arrests and return more games back to his collection.
Jackson is being held at the Jefferson County Jail on a $500,000 bond.