A GORSE Hill restaurant has been burgled twice in the space of a month, losing more than £2,000 and stock in separate break-ins.
The Buteco restaurant in Cricklade Road has been in business in the area for years under the management of Brazilian-born Paulo Rodrigues, who was shocked to find his cash register stolen and money taken from a secure safe overnight on July 30.
In the early hours of Wednesday morning burglars tried their luck again, but came away with a small amount of cash.
Paulo, 33, has now installed better safety measures and investigations into both incidents are ongoing with the neighbourhood policing team.
“The first time they took between £2,000 and £3,000, from the cash register and a safe at the back,” he said.
“They broke in through the fire exit round the back, and the last time they broke the front door in.
“I have certainly learned my lesson from this, because that was pretty much all my bills for the month.
“I’ve just had to cope but it is a stressful situation as it is. When this is your life and you spend six or seven days a week here it hits home.”
Paulo now has a new cash register and is updating security at the store with new CCTV, but had not expected repeated burglaries.
Police are not currently linking the two break-ins as part of their inquiries.
“There has been some frustration of working with the police,” said Paulo.
“The response is they have got officers working but they are busy. The real frustration is this is the second time this has happened in the space of a month.
“We have got an alarm at the front door, and there are some friends living next door who heard the alarm.
“We managed to get the person who broke in the first time on our CCTV so we have a picture of the suspect.
“He’s a white male, slim, wearing a beanie and a dark jumper with a white logo. He had red gloves on.
“We do not know if it was the same guy both times, but if they thought they had got away with it the first time, why not try it again?
“I’m getting extra CCTV and have got a new cash register already. I might get a dog as well but it shouldn’t have to come to that.”
Wiltshire Police say all the evidence is being reviewed.
“There have been two separate incidents of burglary which have taken place at the Buteco restaurant,” a spokesman said.
“The first took place between 10pm on July 30 and 10am on July 31, in which the offenders have pushed their way in through the fire exit and stolen just over £2,000 and a quantity of beer.
“Investigations are ongoing with the local neighbourhood policing team into forensics and CCTV.
“The second incident was reported to us at 2am on August 20 in which someone pushed their way in through the front door and stole a small amount of cash.
“The investigation is still active and we are not connecting the two incidents.”