Burglars caught on camera breaking in through walls of three Ahwatukee businesses

The burglars who entered three Ahwatukee businesses on Elliot Road and 51st Street by smashing holes in their walls remain on the loose.
Published: Jun. 4, 2023 at 9:07 PM MST
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PHOENIX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - The burglars who entered three Ahwatukee businesses on Elliot Road and 51st Street by smashing holes in their walls remain on the loose.

“A little unorthodox, for sure,” said Patrick Larson, the owner of Caffe Boa. Larson said he bought the restaurant two years ago. The anniversary lands next weekend. He said this was the first break-in the restaurant has had since he took over. “It’s was pretty wild, as far as seeing two grown man come through the wall,” he said.

Just after 4 a.m. on Thursday, Larson’s surveillance cameras captured two burglars breaking a wall connecting Caffe Boa and Sakana Sushi. One man pops out, and the other follows. The pair scatter throughout Larson’s restaurant with their faces covered with bandana scarves.

Larson said his security system gave a warning beep when it detects motion. If a code isn’t put in, a loud alarm goes off, and law enforcement is alerted. That’s what happened when the thieves can be seen running away. One left through the back door, and the other went back through the hole they came in from. “It’s a little upsetting because our heart and soul is truly in this and a lot of people in the community love this place, and we have a large following of regulars, so it makes them feel kind of unsafe as well,” said Larson.

Before getting to his restaurant, Larson said the burglars used the back door of a vacant unit and made a hole in the wall to enter Smiley Nails. The nail salon owner did not want to talk on camera but said they don’t keep money in the building. However, the thieves turned off their security cameras, trashed the place, collected equipment in baskets and even ate her cookie.

She said they tried to smash through one of her walls to get into the Sakani Sushi bar, but a beam was in the way. Therefore, the pair made another hole in her wall to enter the sushi restaurant.

The owner of Sakana was not available when an Arizona’s Family crew stopped by, but we could see the walls patched up. “Luckily, nothing was taken and no one was hurt which is all that matters because we can fix dry wall. If they came in through the window, we can fix a broken glass. It could’ve been a lot worse, so I feel good about it,” said Larson.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information on the case to call 602-876-TIPS. Larson is also offering a free Spaghetti Meatballs meal every day for a year for any tip leading to the suspects’ arrests.

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