4 restaurant burglaries in 1 night along Pilsen street

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Business owners are on alert in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood after an outbreak of burglaries targeting businesses and restaurants, including four burglaries in one night.

"They showed me some pictures. It is the same guy," said Angel Diaz of Pilsen Breakfast and Grill.

That same person is apparently responsible for a rash of break-ins in Pilsen in the past two weeks. On Monday night, four restaurants were burgled along the same stretch of 18th street. Pilsen Breakfast and Grill was hit around 3 a.m.

"The good thing is we always have the key on the drawer. There was nothing in there and there was a little envelope with $100," Diaz said.

Also broken into overnight were Dia De Los Tamales, Café Jumping Bean and Memo's Hot Dogs. All four are on 18th Street, and the last three are on the same block. They were broken into within an hour of each other. The owners all have similar stories: the intruder uses some type of tool to break into their windows or doors, but his payoff is minimal.

"Money-wise, nothing was taken but there was substantial damage done on the way in," said Gerardo Garza of Memo's Hot Dogs.

Garza said the business owners in the neighborhood are all worried, and not because of what is being stolen.

"It does alarm people because a lot of the businesses have either the manager or the owners of the businesses themselves live over the business," Garza said.

So far the burglar has showed no signs of escalation and has showed an unusual focus on petty cash, leaving behind technology including smartphones and iPads during his break-ins.

Over the last month the break-ins have become almost routine in and around 18th Street.

"There are roughly about 14, and then there's the ones people haven't reported" said Vince Sanchez, Chief of Staff for 25th Ward Ald. Daniel Solis.

Maria Molina, who owns Don Churro along with her husband, said the break-ins have been very premeditated. Don Churro was broken into last Wednesday by what appears to be the same man. Molina said police told her Tuesday they have a good idea of who they're looking for.
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