No joy at Koi following overnight cash-box heist

Koi Palace, a popular Chinese restaurant in Serramonte Plaza, was burglarized Monday morning when unknown suspects got inside the restaurant through an unlocked door and stole more than $36,000, police said.

At 4:30 a.m., Daly City police officers responded to an alarm at the restaurant at 365 Gellert Blvd. According to Daly City police Capt. Mike Edwards, the officers found the front door unlocked.

“The officers did a thorough check of the premises, and nothing had been disturbed or appeared to be out of place,” he said.

According to police, the restaurant’s owner, Willie Ng, told the officers to lock the front door if everything looked OK.

When the restaurant’s employees came to work in the morning, they found that a cabinet containing a cash box was pried open and $36,288 in tips was missing, police said.

According to Edwards, the tips had been accumulating for a week.

Edwards said the officers who checked the restaurant in the morning said they were sure they did not miss the pried cabinet.

“The officer said, ‘We would have noticed it,’ so the mystery continues,” Edwards said.

He did not confirm whether the burglary was committed by one of more than 100 restaurant employees or someone who knew the inner workings of the restaurant. However, he said the police will conduct more interviews with employees as part of their investigation.

Ng declined to comment on the burglary.

Koi Palace, which opened in 1997, seats 400 people. According to police, the restaurant did not have interior security cameras. The restaurant has not had a burglary in four years, according to police.

Koi Palace opened for business as usual Monday at 11 a.m.

svasilyuk@examiner.com

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