At approximately 5 a.m Thursday morning, police say an unknown person or group of people broke into the Sullivan Tire at the intersection of Pond and Washington streets by “kicking a garage door panel in,” a police report said.
A motion-activated alarm within the building was triggered, police said, but for reasons that remain unclear, the police were not contacted by either Sullivan Tire or the alarm company, American Alarm, until 6:15, when the store manager arrived to open for the day.
Finding the register drawer empty and on the counter, the manager left the store immediately to contact the police, Suurhans said.
"A small amount of cash" -- less than $200 -- was stolen, police said.
Suurhans said there is "a high probability" that the Norwell incident is connected to two other Thursday morning break-ins at Sullivan Tire’s Hanover and Marshfield stores.
In a written statement, a spokesman for Sullivan Tire said, "due to the current economy," such theft has become "increasingly common" in communities.
"It places an unfair strain on the local police as well as our retail operations personnel."
A spokesman, reached at the company’s headquarters in Norwell, said he did not know yet what the total loss to the company is or the last time a theft occurred at one of Sullivan Tire's approximately 80 commercial establishments.
While there were no witnesses to the Norwell theft and the store does not use a security camera, Suurhans said police are looking to see what clues security cameras at nearby businesses could yield.
Anyone with information can contact Detective McDevitt at the Norwell Police Department at 781-659-7979.