Burglar caught on video breaking into Wilton Manors thrift store

Cash stolen from shop that benefits pets in need

WILTON MANORS, Fla. – A popular Wilton Manors thrift shift shop that funds a nonprofit organization was broken into Sunday night, and part of the burglary was caught on surveillance video.

"It hurts, and it makes you angry," said executive director Sue Martino.

In the video, a man is seen in a T-shirt and shorts breaking into the front door of the shop at 2200 Northwest 9th Avenue, then taking the cash register once he made his way inside.

Martino said she received a phone call from her alarm company after 11 p.m., and directed them to call police.

She and other volunteers arrived to find a mess.

"I see a mountain of tiny pieces of shredded glass," she recalled.

"The glass was all over," said volunteer Eileen Yodanis.

Martino said proceeds from the thrift store fund the Pet Project, a nonprofit organization that helps people who can't take care of their pets because of illness or financial hardship.

"Every penny of everything that gets donated buys pet food and pet supplies," Martino said.

From one camera angle the suspect appears to throw something at the front glass door before kicking it and crawling inside.

Another camera captures him unplugging the cash register and taking it outside with him.

Martino said the register only had about $100 inside and ended up being recovered in the back of the church next door. 

The bigger expense was replacing the front door, which cost about $1,000, Martino said.

"It's a violation; that we’re a charity and somebody has violated that," Yodanis said.

Police are investigating. Anyone with information is asked to call Wilton Manors police or Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS.

"This is really offensive because you're hurting the animals. And there's no place for that," Martino said.

About the Author:

Janine Stanwood joined Local 10 News in February 2004 as an assignment editor. She is now a general assignment reporter. Before moving to South Florida from her Washington home, Janine was the senior legislative correspondent for a United States senator on Capitol Hill.