Thieves took staff tips and donations to Riding for the Disabled in what appeared to be a relatively fruitless but mystery burglary of a cafe attached to a brewery near Napier on Sunday night.
The thieves forced a window at The Filter Room in Meeanee and avoided being detected by security systems, meaning the burglary was not discovered until a chef arrived for work yesterday and found a smashed till, which had been emptied when staff left soon after 7pm on Sunday, said manager Nikki Tierney.
"That's so low," she said, lamenting the removal of the charitable funds.
Also stolen in the burglary were a laptop computer and an iPad, but there appeared to have been no attempt to steal any liquor.
The Filter Room, part of the Hawke's Bay Independent Brewery operation, has been open about six years, with just one other burglary.
Police were last night unavailable to comment on the burglary but it was not thought the burglary was being linked to another incident in which a youth was caught about 9pm on Sunday after trying to escape an apparent burglary attempt at Pakowhai.