Police say an unlocked door may have been all the opening a thief needed to rob a popular restaurant in south Charlotte early Saturday morning.
The robber walked into the Cantina 1511 restaurant in the Stonecrest shopping center just after midnight Saturday and caught the manager by surprise.
"He was wearing a ski mask and came in armed with a pistol while the manager was doing the nightly count and swiped the money off the table and left," said Capt. Jim Wilson.
Wilson wouldn't say how much money the man took, and police say they do not believe there is surveillance video that would help them identify him.
The robbery happened in a part of Charlotte where crimes like that are rare. Police say it was only the second robbery of a business in the department's South Division so far this year, down from six for the same time last year.
It is part of a broader downturn in crime in that area -- violent crime is down 34 percent so far this year, and overall crime is down 13 percent.
But police warn that it shouldn't be a reason for people or businesses to let down their guard.
"You can't let your guard down anywhere ... People love to live and work out here, but bad things can happen to you anywhere," said Wilson.