MARYSVILLE — For Shabbir Bala, it was an unpleasant moment of deja vu.
Bala has owned the Boondockers Restaurant since 1994, and the restaurant has been in its current location on Cedar Avenue for more than two years. In June of last year, he found one of the windows in his front door had been broken, as part of an attempted burglary. On Jan. 9 of this year, his restaurant was broken into in much the same way, and this time, the burglary attempt was successful.
“Last time, they tried to lift the safe under our front entry counter,” Bala said. “We added enhanced security, including motion detectors.”
In spite of these extra measures, burglars were able to remove the restaurant’s safe Jan. 9, using crowbars to move the counter above it at least 12 inches. The alarm system went off shortly before 3:15 a.m., and Marysville Police responded to the call of a suspected burglary in progress shortly afterward. A vehicle suspected of transporting the burglars was seen in the restaurant’s parking lot as early as 2:30 a.m., but Bala marveled at how quickly the burglars must have broken in and moved the safe, especially given the safe’s weight and how low they would have had to crouch, in order to move it through the opening in the door.
“Did they dance their way out?” Bala laughed, before adding, “I’ll be getting more security enhancements, but obviously, I won’t be saying what they are.”
Such measures don’t come cheap, and it’s not the only challenge Bala’s family has faced recently. His son, Faraz, graduated from West Point and was recently promoted to first lieutenant in Iraq, where he’s been serving as an officer in the U.S. Army. Shabbir expressed pride in his son for serving his country and “contributing to the welfare” of America. Bala then went on to express gratitude to his fellow Marysville residents.
“We had this one gentleman, a good samaritan who didn’t even want to tell us who he was, who left us a card with cash in it after the burglary,” Bala said. “I want to thank him, because it shows how humanitarian people are here.”
Anyone with information that might assist the Marysville Police Department Investigation Division solve this burglary is encouraged to contact Detective John Hendrickson at 360-363-8326.