A thief who burglarized Elsmere BBQ in Portland early Wednesday climbed on the building’s roof and cut the internet connection so that the restaurant’s security cameras couldn’t record the break-in, a co-owner said.

An employee at the Stevens Avenue eatery reported the burglary Wednesday morning after finding the restaurant’s safe in the kitchen. Someone had pried it open and emptied it of cash, said Adam Powers, a restaurant co-owner. The safe had been in an upstairs office.

“This person obviously cased us to a certain degree, he went up on the roof and cut the cable. And there was no fingerprints,” Powers said. “This wasn’t just a drunk kid, this was somebody who thought about it.”

Police took a report and processed the crime scene, but there was no further information available Wednesday.

The business has security cameras that are connected to the internet, but the thief climbed on the restaurant’s roof and cut the internet and phone lines, Powers said.

The cable company told Powers that the disconnection occurred at 1:06 a.m. Wednesday, leaving him with no footage of the burglary.

Powers said he wanted to publicize the break-in so nearby residents and businesses can take precautions.

“I just wanted to reach out and let people know,” Powers said.

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