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Portal IGA robbed Friday
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    The Portal I.G.A. grocery store was robbed early Friday morning in what appears to be a professional job.
    According to Portal Chief of Police, Jason Sapp, the burglary happened between 2 and 3 a.m. He said the burglar forced his way into the store through the back door, disabled the alarm, then gained entry into the office, broke into the safe and made off with an undetermined amount of cash and checks.
    "We some lead we're following up on. We've got some video - they're working on that - and some fingerprints. We're trying to get those processed," said Sapp. "It's still under investigation at this point."
    Gene McDaniel, chief deputy of the Bulloch County Sheriff's Office, echoed Sapp's said their still collection information and that they have no prime suspect at this time.
    "We looking at a number of possible suspects and processing all the evidence," said McDaniel. "Once that's done, the evidence may implicate someone or eliminate them from consideration."
    Larry Lanier, the owner of the I.G.A., said he's had better days. He described how the burglar got into the safe in his office.
    "I got a key lock on it and he tore it up," said Lanier. "Evidently, he knows how to work a combination, since he got the combination on my safe and got in it. He stayed in for almost two hours. He even rewired the phones in the back so it wouldn't call the police."
    According to Lanier, the thief took off with cash and checks, some of them paychecks that were cashed over the last couple of days.
    "I've got a tape of all the transaction numbers. Sea Island Bank, BB&T and all of them have been real good about contacting customers. I've had bunches and bunches of customers come back today and give me new checks," said Lanier. "The banks have been real good. I had one bank that refused to help me, but the good Lord will look after them and every customer I can tell will too."
    He also said that his granddaughter kept an envelope in the safe she was using to save up for a car, for when she turned 16.
    "I'm just thankful that they didn't come in and rob somebody and kill somebody during the day," Lanier said.
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