Attempted burglaries at two Airport Road businesses
Department of Public Safety officers were called yesterday morning to investigate attempted burglaries at two separate businesses on the Tafuna Airport Road.
The Bank of Hawai’i Tafuna branch was broken into during the early morning hours yesterday as was the Pizza Hut premises next door.
DPS investigators cordoned off the areas before 8am yesterday morning but were cleared out before 11am when the bank opened for business as usual.
BOH branch manager EJ Ozu told Samoa News local authorities were contacted upon discovery of the break-in and an investigation is currently underway.
Glass from the small windows located close to the ceiling at the back section of the bank building lay strewn on the ground and the bank's ATM machine appeared damaged as if someone had tried unsuccessfully to pry it open.
“Yes, the glass was broken and it appears as if this was the entry point,” Ozu told Samoa News at around 1pm yesterday, adding that “all services including the ATM are operating as normal” at the Tafuna branch.
Ozu said the bank does have 24 hour surveillance cameras and reiterated that an “investigation is on-going”. Ozu said the incident “was an attempted burglary not a robbery as no one was present when entry was gained.” (Information initially received by Samoa News, called the incident an attempted robbery).
PIZZA HUT ATTEMPTED BURGLARY
An attempted burglary that occurred during the early hours yesterday morning, next door at Pizza Hut Restaurant was also reported where one or more persons gained entrance inside by breaking the glass front door.
It is suspected that the burglar or burglars were then able to reach the lock, through the hole in the broken glass, to unlock the door and get inside. A Pizza Hut employee who was at the restaurant with police yesterday morning told a Samoa News reporter on the scene that it appears that the robbers had tried to get into the safe, which does not hold any money overnight.
The employee, who asked not be identified as this employee was not authorized to speak to the news media, said the only thing missing was the small Red Cross donation container that was on the counter. The employee didn’t know how much money was in the collection container.
Police Commander Lavata’i Ta’ase Sagapolutele, who heads the DPS Criminal Investigation Division, told Samoa News that he can only “confirm that there was a break-in at BoH as well as Pizza Hut” yesterday morning.
He said the investigation in both cases is ongoing, therefore CID does not have any information at this point if both break-ins are connected or not. He also said no suspect(s) have been positively identified yet.