HEARTLESS thieves have been accused of putting life-saving research in danger after forcing their way into a charity shop, causing hundreds of pounds of damage.
Burglars smashed their way through the roof of the British Heart Foundation shop in Sunderland’s Blandford Street overnight on Friday.
Police say a “substantial amount of damage” was caused to the premises, but the raiders only made off with gold jewellery and cash.
Now charity bosses are installing security equipment and will no longer leave cash on the premises.
The burglary has left the charity £600 down, which would have funded research into coronary heart disease.
“These callous thieves not only stole from this charity but have caused a lot of damage to the shop when they forced their way in,” Inspector Mick Hall said.
“We’re appealing for assistance from the community to help us find those responsible for this crime so we can put them before the courts.”
The charity is appealing for help to bring its stock levels back to normal.
Area manager Nigel Bullock said: “We absolutely rely on the support of the Sunderland community to keep us running, and without their donations, we risk reducing funding for vital research into heart disease.”
Potential witnesses can call police on 101 ext 69191.