Man broke into at least 8 Long Beach restaurants in span of 3 days, police say

Long Beach police say they’ve arrested a man suspected of at least eight restaurant burglaries in Long Beach this week, including at well-known businesses such as shops at SteelCraft in Bixby Knolls and The Ordinarie in Downtown.

Police said detectives used security camera images to quickly identify the suspect as Corey James Swayney, who lives in Long Beach but doesn’t have a permanent address, according to an arrest log.

Police took Swayney into custody at a home in Alamitos Beach around 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to arrest records. He was booked into jail on suspicion of commercial burglary as well as an outstanding warrant for misdemeanor battery, records show. His bail was set at $550,000, police said.

The string of restaurant burglaries made headlines this week. The owners of well-known restaurants like Michael’s Downtown, The Ordinarie, Berlin Bistro and The Social List said they were broken into. Although it’s not clear yet if all those break-ins are connected.

“He smashed one of our windows with a big rock, went to the cash drawers, smashed all our computers [and] in doing so searched about for small electronics, things like that,” Christy Caldwell, owner of The Ordinarie, told The Post.

Police have not tied Swayney to the break-ins at Berlin Bistro, The Social List or Michael’s, but they allege he’s responsible for eight other restaurant break-ins where the suspect followed a similar pattern of smashing through the door and grabbing cash and electronics between Saturday, June 19, and Monday, June 21.

Police provided an address for each of the reported break-ins:

  • 1800 Ximeno Ave. (Chipotle at the Traffic Circle)
  • 2104 E. Broadway (Park Pantry)
  • 2131 E. Broadway (Chen’s Chinese Restaurant)
  • 1837 E. Seventh Street (Pancho’s Vegan Tacos)
  • 70 Atlantic Ave. (The Breakfast Bar)
  • 210 The Promenade North (The Ordinarie)
  • 3768 Long Beach Blvd #105 (Waffle Love at SteelCraft)
  • 3768 Long Beach Blvd #106 (La Taqueria Brand at SteelCraft)

Investigators think Swayney may be tied to more burglaries as well.

“Burglary detectives are actively pursuing all leads and are discovering more incidents that are possibly related,” police said in a statement.

Anyone with information was asked to call the LBPD burglary detail at 562-570-7351. Anonymous tips can be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or online at lacrimestoppers.org.

Cheantay Jensen contributed to this report.

Editor’s note: This story was updated to correct the name of The Social List.

Burglar smashes windows, steals cash and electronics from several businesses Downtown, Retro Row

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Jeremiah Dobruck is the breaking news editor for the Long Beach Post. He began his journalism career in 2007 as an intern at Palos Verdes Peninsula News and has worked for The Forum Newsgroup in New York City, the Daily Pilot and the Press-Telegram. He lives in Torrance with his wife, Lindsey, and their two young children.
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