Robbing a Restaurant? Make Sure Owner's Not Watching - NBC4 Washington

Robbing a Restaurant? Make Sure Owner's Not Watching

Restauranteur Notices Burglary In Progress



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    Security cameras weren't the only thing to catch this burglar. The restaurant owner spotted something going on from across the street.

    A burglar in northwest Washington was busted after breaking into a restaurant on U Street through the building's roof.

    It happened Feb. 24 at the Duplex Diner.  The restaurant owner happened to be right across the street at the time, having a drink with  a friend.  He knew something was amiss because he saw the restaurant's roof hatch open.

    "[The hatch] hasn't been used since a drag queen dropped down through it during our 10th anniversary," said owner Eric Hirshfield.

    Hirshfied called police.  A police dog tracked down the burglar.  Hirshfield's office was trashed, but nothing was taken.  Security video also caught the suspect inside the restaurant.

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    The arrest drew the attention of detectives investigating a series of skylight break-ins that have happened recently along Q Street.  However, police do not believe the same person is responsible.  Investigators say the only similarity between the restaurant bust and the skylight burglaries appears to be how the criminals gained access.