Safe containing charity cash stolen from same building raided last year
- Credit: John Sankey
A safe containing hundreds of pounds of charity donations has been stolen from a community centre almost a year to the day since thieves struck in exactly the same style.
The Salvation Army building in New Street, Woodbridge, was broken into at some point overnight between Thursday and Friday.
It comes almost exactly a year after the safe was stolen from the same church and community centre building in a like manner.
Police are also investigating another burglary on the same night, in which nothing was stolen, at the nearby Oxfam charity shop, in The Thoroughfare.
Woodbridge resident John Sankey discovered the community centre door open on Friday morning at about 8.15am.
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“I had some clothes to donate so I went inside but couldn’t see anyone,” said Mr Sankey.
“I shouted for someone but there was still no one there, so I went home and phoned the police.
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“They gave me the numbers of people from the Salvation Army, but I couldn’t get anyone on the phone, so I went back down and realised the door had been damaged. The office was empty and there was a hole where the safe should have been.
“The same thing happened last year.”
Last year, on Sunday, December 1, Major Alan Hill arrived for a church service to discover someone had used a crowbar to smash into the office and steal £670 from the safe.
The burglary happened after the charity had raised cash from the town’s Christmas street fair.
This year, the money, valued at £500-600, along with a £200 cheque from the Co-op, was due to fund the annual Christmas lunch for the lonely and vulnerable.
Last December, security cameras captured a man wearing a Russian ushanka-style hat, with ear flaps, and a hoodie obstructing his face from view.
Mr Hill thinks the same person could be responsible for this year’s break-in after video showed someone of similar build with the same face covering.
He added: “The only thing that’s good to them is the cash, so I’d ask them to please at least return the cheques instead of just ripping them up.”
Anyone with information should call police on 101, quoting 37/70284/20 for the Salvation Army burglary and 37/70279/20 for the Oxfam burglary.