Break-in at Mooroopna pizzeria is another blow to flood-hit owner

“Total shock and disbelief that someone could sink so low and do something like this,” he said.

“It was just another blow. That’s when it really (hit it), unfortunately something like that could happen after all that.

“We try to keep our spirits up. You know, natural disasters that we can’t do much about, you can’t really help yourself, but things like that, it’s just amazing.

Mr Coskun was woken by alarms early on Wednesday morning (October 19) warning him that his business, Che Che’s Pizza on Macisaac Rd, was being burglarized.

“It actually happened at twenty to seven (6:40 a.m.), I got alerts on my phone and I checked the camera on my phone and yes there was someone in my store,” said he declared.

“They practically ransacked it looking for money.

“They took a guide dog container for donations. I had one and they raided the tip jar, took the gold coins out of the tip jar, then walked out with the guide dog Labrador.

“In the footage I can see they walked past it and came back and smashed it with a hammer and smashed it in, the bottom part of the glass door, then crawled over the sandbags.”

Che Che’s was open on Saturdays, with Mr. Coskun and others then working through the night to put sand in the store.

“It was about four o’clock in the morning (Sunday), we were still there watching the water go by Echuca Rd, watching it go up the service road on Echuca Rd there, around the corner and surrounding the store and then we left and I went home and came back (a few hours later) and it was pretty much up to the windows and in and out of the store,” he said. -he declares.

Then, after all that effort, it was difficult for the business to be flooded and then robbed, Mr. Coskun said.

“Devastated, absolutely devastated,” he said.

“I’ve only been in business since July. I bought the company in July. I put almost everything I had in there. That was it, just in the blink of an eye, gone.

A single father of five children, Mr. Coskun is determined to get the business back on its feet.

“Absolutely, absolutely. I don’t want to step back, I just want to move forward from here,” he said.

“It’s a little hard to say when, because we haven’t even started cleaning yet.

“The water just disappeared today (Wednesday) so we can come to the store – we couldn’t get to it.”

Mr. Coskun urges residents of flood-affected areas to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to the police.

The theft was reported to Victoria Police, who earlier in the week urged people to phone Shepparton Police Station on 5820 5777 if they observed suspicious behavior or unknown people loitering in an area.

“While the police hope people will do the right thing and support others in the community, we are aware that there are some who will take advantage of others when needed,” said Sgt Josh McCabe .

“If it looks like a crime is being committed, please call 000.”

Mr Coskun said the thief also tried to break into a cigarette shop a few doors down the street.

He described the attacker as most likely a male, around 16 or 17 years old, wearing a black Nike jacket with a hood and carrying a hammer and knife.

“We’re a row of stores here, so everyone will check their security footage for me,” he said.