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Thrift store that raises money for homeless animals burglarized

CANTONMENT -- Thieves broke into a thrift store in Cantonment that raises money to help animals. Among the items they stole was the store's video surveillance system. It's not the first time the store's been ripped off.

The owner made the discovery Friday morning. She says hundreds of dollars worth of items were stolen at the Tuff Times thrift store on Neal Road just off Highway 29.
   
The suspects ransacked the store, taking video games, jewelry and even donated dog food used to feed stray animals.

Janice Wilson, who works as a volunteer cashier at the store, said, "We're part of an animal rescue effort."
   
She and the owner use the money raised by the business to help take care of dozens of animals at their homes.

Wilson said, "We take abused, neglected and abandoned animals, rehab 'em, get 'em back healthy and try to place 'em in good homes."
   
Records from the Escambia County Sheriff's Office show deputies have responded to a few burglary calls at the store's address over the last couple years. This time thieves not only made off with loot, they stole a key part of the store's surveillance system.

"They didn't take the TV screen, but they took the recorder box," Wilson said.

Despite the crime, she and the owner say the store will stay open and continue raising money for animals.

"It's just a shame because we're good to everybody," Wilson lamented, "We have rock-bottom prices, cheaper than any thrift store around."

If you have any information that can help investigators, you're asked to call Crime Stoppers at 850-433-STOP.