Burglars hit nonprofit thrift shop, stealing thousands in cash and goods

A still image from surveillance video taken at Teen Challenge shows a burglary suspect inside the store.

Police are looking for a thrift store thief who was caught on surveillance video stealing thousands of dollars' worth of cash and goods Thursday morning.

"It’s frustrating because we’re here, we’re helping the community by having low-priced items for them. People support our guys that are in recovery by donating, so they believe that the items here are going to help men in recovery," said Russ Tappero, vice president of operations at Teen Challenge Thrift Store.

Teen Challenge is a nonprofit Thrift Store that provides funding and vocational training for adults recovering from drug addiction.

Now, the team at Teen Challenge is cleaning up a big mess after thieves ransacked the store.

"We know there was about $1,200 to $1,500 cash that was in the safe, and we also know that we had a number of items stolen, even some of the things from the floor. There was some jewelry that was here that was ready for sale," Tappero said.

The crooks were caught on surveillance camera stuffing luggage bags with merchandise and dragging them out of the store.

They also destroyed the store's office, causing even more damage.

"A lot of equipment was damaged. They weren’t just taking computers and taking the time to unhook them, they were cutting wire and yanking things and dropping stuff on the floor, so some damage, I’d say a few thousand dollars' worth of damage as well," Tappero said.

Surveillance video shows the crime happening around 8 a.m. Thursday.

Police don't have suspect descriptions at this time beyond what's in the surveillance video.

"More than anything, it’s just the disappointment that someone would come after a thrift store that’s really trying to help people and create this chaos," Tappero said.

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