WILSHIRE BLVD — Authorities are investigating a rash of commercial burglaries that happened overnight Sunday on the east end of Wilshire Boulevard, the Santa Monica Police Department reported.

SMPD Sgt. Jay Trisler said at least five businesses in the 2900 and 3000 blocks of Wilshire Boulevard were targeted, with the suspect or suspects making off with a laptop and several hundred dollars in cash. Two dry cleaners, a nail salon, karate studio and a garden supply store were hit.

Trisler said objects were used to break storefront windows. The suspect or suspects would then enter the businesses and tear open cash registers. Thousands of dollars in damages were reported.

“We assume by the locations and style of the burglaries that the same individual or individuals perpetrated these crimes,” Trisler said. “If anyone hears glass breaking in the middle of the night or they see a broken window at a business, please contact the police department.”

Sam Zerehi, co-owner of Park Avenue Cleaners at 2936 Wilshire Blvd., said his front window was smashed, neon signs were destroyed and at least two cash registers were damaged in the break-in. He estimates the damages at $2,000 to $3,000. He said he lost about $600 in cash.

“We’ve had broken windows before, usually from homeless who throw rocks, but this time it wasn’t that,” he said. “Those responsible knew what they were doing and what they were after. I hope the police solve the problem.”

Trisler said a description of the suspect or suspects was not available.

Those who believe they have information on the burglaries are urged to contact the SMPD 24 hours a day at (310) 458-8495.

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