Bath Junkie executives made an unplanned trip to Red Bank Monday to restock their Monmouth Street store after an employee allegedly cleaned it out of all merchandise. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
Passersby and boudoir-supply shoppers may have noticed something was a little off at Bath Junkie on Monmouth Street in recent weeks.
The store was empty.
But despite the resemblance to the dead-of-night departures sometimes seen in downtown Red Bank, there’s good news: the store is sticking around.
The bad news for the company that owns the shop: it was cleaned out of all its merchandise, shelves and displays, says company CEO Judy Zimmer.
A police report filed with Red Bank police says that an employee of the store, who wasn’t named in the report but Zimmer said is from Hazlet, cleaned the store out recently.
When? Zimmer isn’t sure. The police report is dated March 19 and is thin on details.
The chain’s corporate offices are in Arkansas, and that’s where Zimmer was when she heard there was a problem in Red Bank.
Zimmer told redbankgreen on Monday that the company was tipped off to a problem when FedEx, after numerous attempts to deliver a package, called headquarters saying the shop didn’t appear open anymore.
She said the employee, who was in charge of the store and a small number of employees, had only worked there for about four months and, from what she understands, turned out the lights one day, locked the door and took off with everything from inside.
Zimmer and other executives had to be in Washington D.C. over the weekend for a meeting, so they found it a good time to head north and get the store back together. They had merchandise and displays shipped into Red Bank on Sunday night and said they intend to reopen by the end of the week.
They didn’t want to focus on the unfortunate circumstances of the temporary closing, though.
“Our first thing is to get this store together and running,” Zimmer said. “We want everyone to check us out. We need their help. This has never happened to us before.”