NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A Norfolk breakfast restaurant is cleaning up after an early morning break-in earlier this week.
Norfolk Police say they responded to Terrie’s Breakfast and Lunch at 7:35 a.m. Tuesday.
Manager Quincey Roberts said this is the second time they’ve been broken into in less than a year.
Roberts believes the thieves pried a window open to get inside overnight when they were closed, before taking cash and doing a lot of damage to the restaurant.
She said she wishes people would realize when they do stuff like this, they’re hurting more than just a business, they’re hurting the people who work there too.
“My server called me,” Roberts said. “She said, ‘You’ve got to get here right now, somebody broke in the restaurant and everything is a mess.'”
She said they broke the restaurant’s cash register and ATM, stole cash and spray-painted several items, like their card readers, to try to cover their tracks.
“We’re trying our hardest just to keep our employees working,” Roberts said, “like those things like being closed for a day, being closed for half a day, trying to replace the money they took, the damages, I mean that is detrimental.”
Roberts said Norfolk Police officers came and told her they were able to get a few fingerprints off the doors they tried to pry open. She thinks the thieves were targeting the ATM.
“They obviously had their eye on the big prize, which they got,” Roberts said, “so they probably would’ve done anything to hurt any one of us, so it just makes you feel very uncomfortable.”
Roberts said this is the second time they’ve been broken into in the past year. She said she’s glad no one was hurt, and is now encouraging her employees to leave in groups so no one is alone.
“We work hard to keep this place open so when somebody essentially comes in, it feels like violating,” said Roberts. “You’re in our space, our safe place coming in here, and now we have to be extra cautious when we’re walking in the doors.”
She said that on some days, it’s a struggle to keep the doors open as a small business, so adding to the struggles hurts even more.
“I don’t like thieves at all, but that just irritates me beyond belief,” Roberts said. “Why would you take from somebody when we are all struggling?
“I just wish that people would realize that when you are doing stuff like that, you’re hurting more than just a business, you are affecting every single person that works here and then some. It’s just not right.”
Norfolk Police say anyone with information about this burglary is encouraged to call the Crime line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.