New Haven police investigate smash and grab burglaries of downtown businesses

Surveillance photo of the suspect. (Photo: New Haven police)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– Police are investigating several smash and grab burglaries of downtown New Haven businesses Friday.

Police say on Thursday night at 11:15 p.m, officers responded to Fornalli’s Ristorante, at 99 Orange Street, after the burglar alarm was triggered. Officers learned that the glass door pane had been smashed and the restaurant was burglarized. Officers also found a toppled over cash register and the owner told police that cash and two bottles of Hennessy Cognac were missing. However the restaurant’s cameras did not catch an image of the thief.

Then on Friday morning, at 4:24 a.m., officers responded to the College Convenience Market, at 254 College Street, to a burglary in progress. Their glass door, adjacent to apartment buildings, was also smashed. Witnesses told police that they saw a white man wearing a dark colored jacket or sweatshirt and pants with reflective tape circling the thighs and ankles, run from the store. A surveillance video showed the man making off with cash and what looked like a handful of lotto tickets.

“They got off with our register,” said Daryl Wells, general manager of Mecha Noodle Bar. “Couple little things like our iPad. But no major damage.”

(WTNH/George DeYounge)
(WTNH/George DeYounge)

The thief did however leave behind a duffel bag filled with Newport cigarettes and several debit and credit cards belonging to different individuals that police are now tracking down.

At 4:30 a.m., police responded to another alarm, this time at Greg’s Tailor Shop, located at 242 College Street. The glass front door was smashed and the cash register was found broken on the floor. The owner told police that cash was stolen

(WTNH/George DeYounge)
(WTNH/George DeYounge)

Just after 5 a.m. another burglar alarm rang, this time at The Wine Thief at 181 Crown Street. The pane of glass from their front door had been broken. Surveillance video from there now showed two people, possibly a man and woman, breaking the glass and reaching through to unlock the door. They then broke into the cash register but found it empty so took a 700 ml of Remy Martin Cognac, which is valued at $3,000.

(WTNH/George DeYounge)
(WTNH/George DeYounge)

Police say that the male looked to be about 6 feet tall with a large build but his race could not be determined in the surveillance video. He was wearing a hooded sweatshirt and the pants with reflective tape circling the thighs and ankles. His accomplice was about 5’6″ and wore a hooded sweatshirt and jeans.

Police say the burglaries are the work of one man and an accomplice who is possibly a woman. The incident remains under investigation. New Haven Police said the suspect left a duffel bag filled with credit and debit cards belonging to other people inside one of the crime scenes. If you recognize the suspect or have any information, call New Haven Police.

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