Suspects try to nab cash from Panino’s

by Andy Steinke

;Two suspects entered Panino’s Restaurant on Friday just before 1 a.m. looking for some quick cash, but left empty-handed.

The suspects entered the Stadium Village restaurant on Washington Avenue Southeast through the front door, according to a police report.

The suspects were able to pick the lock on the door to gain entry, manager Eliot Hawkinson said. The restaurant is now installing deadbolts on its doors.

Hawkinson said the suspects didn’t take anything with them when they left. “There wasn’t anything for them to take,” he said.

According to the report, the hooded and masked suspects went directly for the cash register drawer, but the drawer wasn’t there.

Minneapolis Police Sgt. Jesse Garcia said the suspects knew what they were looking for, and left when they didn’t find it.

“They must think someone leaves money in the drawer,” he said.

Hawkinson said one suspect was wearing a white jacket with a fur lining on the hood, and baggy blue jeans that had a worn look to them.

A wig-donning suspect also broke into the restaurant the morning of Oct. 19. He entered through the same front door and stole the cash drawer and the money in it.

Hawkinson said as a result of that robbery, the cash register drawers are now kept in a different location when the business is closed.

The business’ alarm went off during both break-ins and surveillance cameras caught the suspects each time.

The tapes were sent to Minneapolis Police for processing, Hawkinson said.

Neither case has produced any suspects, nor are there any leads, Garcia said.

Tickets for improper use of disability permits abound

The reasons have varied, but the outcomes have remained the same for some people parking on campus this month.

At least six people, aged 23 to 65, have been issued tickets by University Police for using disability parking permits that weren’t registered to them to park near campus.

Two tickets written Jan. 23 by University police officer David St. Cyr – the main parking enforcement officer – were to students using their grandmothers’ permits to park for free at expired meters.

In three other cases this month, St. Cyr discovered the permits being used were issued to people now deceased.

According to Minnesota law, anyone misusing a disability permit can be ticketed and fined up to $500.

University Lt. Troy Buhta said officers spot at least one or two people trying to use permits illegally every day.

“It’s pretty much a year-round problem,” he said, “people trying to save money.”

Buhta said there isn’t a hot spot that attracts more violators or is patrolled more by police. He said anywhere that has a meter is subject to misuse.

For those using their family member’s disability permits, Buhta leaves them with one reminder:

“The permits are confiscated and taken back by the state. (The family member) will have to contact the Department of Mo- tor Vehicles to get another one issued.”