WATCH IT: Bathroom Bandit' Pulls Off Bizarre Restaurant Heist
KOMO4NEWS - Police say one of the strangest burglaries they've seen in years was caught on a surveillance video camera Saturday night at a University Place restaurant.
The crook hid in a bathroom ceiling, waited for two hours and then stole thousands of dollars in cash after the restaurant closed.
Now police are hoping someone will recognize the burglar on the surveillance video and turn him in.
The video shows a man walking into Captain Nemo's restaurant in University Place, looking away from the surveillance camera.
Wayne Hogan, who has owned Captain Nemo's for 30 years, says it's the first time a crook has targeted his place.
"I am disappointed. I'm a victim, obviously," he says. "I realize times are tough for the economy. Tough for us, too. With the holidays coming, people do desperate things."
So desperate that the crook, dressed in a blue hoodie, jeans, and gym shoes, walked in 10 minutes before closing time and headed straight for the bathroom. He climbed in the ceiling and patiently waited.
"I can't imagine hanging out two hours in a bathroom," says Hogan.
Once the burglar sensed the restaurant was empty, the surveillance camera also captured him dropping from the ceiling, into a storage room behind the bar, where Hogan keeps money in a safe.
The burglar opened it, stole $5,000 and ran out the back door.
"I'm disappointed in humanity. I'm disappointed that someone would take advantage of a situation like that," says Hogan. "It's hurtful. It's hurtful."
Detectives say the thief dropped his hat, described as blue in color, with a lime-colored apple and letters that read NWS.
While the cops investigate and try to figure out if the safe was left open or if this was an inside job, Hogan hopes someone will help put the "bathroom bandit" behind bars.
"I'd like them to report him to the police department. I would like him to pay his dues," says Hogan.
Crime scene investigators plan to come to the restaurant on Monday and search for fingerprints and other forensic evidence.
Investigators also urge anyone with information about the burglary to call the University Place Police Department.
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