While out exploring the waterfront area along North Sound, 14-year-old Alex Richardson came across something you’d expect more from a great heist movie: a safe sitting open along the water’s edge.
Gerardo Ochoa-Vargas, Alex’s “big brother” from the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, took photos of the find and posted them on Facebook. Pretty quickly, Mr. Ochoa-Vargas said, one of Alex’s relatives saw the photos and connected the safe to a recent robbery at Pepper’s restaurant on West Bay Road.
Sitting in the shallows of North Sound, not far from Camana Bay and a short drive from Pepper’s, the safe was empty except for leaves and the various detritus the Sound left as the tide rose and fell around it.
He said the owner from Pepper’s called him and they got in touch with the police. On Sunday Mr. Ochoa-Vargas took a police officer to the spot, and the officer called the Marine Unit to recover the safe.
“It’s open, it doesn’t look damaged. It’s in pristine condition, but it’s empty,” Mr. Ochoa-Vargas said.
Mario Machado, owner of Pepper’s, could not confirm that the safe belonged to him. But, he said, it looked like it. Thieves broke into Mr. Machado’s office in the restaurant early in the morning on Jan. 25. He said the thieves took only the safe, and he declined to say what was in it.
Adrian Seales of the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service said he believes the safe belongs to Pepper’s. It had been forced open and was empty when police removed it from North Sound.