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Burglars steal hundreds from Santa Barbara donut shop

Burglars posing as customers targeted a popular donut shop at around 1:25 p.m. Wednesday in Santa Barbara.

Mary Lim, the longtime owner of Eller’s Donuts on Milpas Street, said three woman came in and acted like they didn’t know each other.

One bought and paid for a couple of donuts while another one of them pretended to spill hot tea. While Lim asked if she was ok and cleaned water off the floor one of the women snuck behind the donut display and cleaned out cash from a small appliance where they held the bank pouches used to make deposits twice a week.

Lim said she was mopping up the hot water and didn’t realize what had happened until they drove away with a man in a white Toyota Prius.

Lim said that $700.00 was missing.

Lim was able to see what happened on her new surveillance video that clearly shows the women.

Lim called her husband to tell him what happened and closed the shop at 3 p.m. after reporting the crime to Santa Barbara Police.

Darby Nett, who works in an office above the shop, said she was sad to hear how her favorite donut shop owners were taken advantage of.

Kris Lertchareonyong owns the award-winning Your Place Thai restaurant next door.

He said a similar burglary happened at his business two months ago. Women came in and kept asking the servers questions while someone snuck in the back and stole from the restaurant.

Both business owners said this is the first time they have been burglarized.

They hope the video will help police catch the thieves.

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