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Walmart in East Setauket reopens after burglary

Suffolk County Police cars and a Suffolk County

Suffolk County Police cars and a Suffolk County Police Crime Scene Section van are parked in front of a Walmart that was closed in Setauket. (Dec. 26, 2009) Credit: Photo by Ed Betz

An overnight burglary from a safe at the Walmart store in East Setauket prompted Suffolk police to shut down the retailer Saturday morning as they investigated, authorities said.

An undetermined amount of money was stolen, Suffolk police Det. Sgt. Mike Fitzharris said. Police also said a number of transaction documents also were taken.

Walmart management officials reported about 6:30 a.m. that the safe had been burglarized, police said.

No one was injured as a result of the incident. The store was opened to customers shortly before 1 p.m. The store's regular opening time is 9 a.m.

Throughout the morning, Walmart workers remained inside the building at 3990 Nesconset-Port Jefferson Hwy. as police officials, who had two crime scene vans outside, gathered evidence.

A store manager referred questions to the Wal-Mart Stores Inc. corporate office. Phone calls requesting comment were not immediately returned.

During the store's shutdown, about 200 people left after seeing "Closed" signs on storefront windows.

Would-be shoppers C.J. Whittle and his wife, Elizabeth, who planned to buy diapers for their daughter Tiffany, 17 months, as well as other goods, said they were disappointed. The Whittles considered heading to the other end of the plaza to another discount retailer, BJ's Wholesale Club, they said.

After business resumed at Walmart, workers at an in-store fast-food restaurant began brewing coffee as buyers with shopping carts roamed the store and others lined up in the customer service section to make returns.

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