West Tisbury police are investigating a nighttime theft of a large amount of cash from Heather Gardens Nursery on State Road that occurred last Sunday. Police believe the thief is someone with knowledge of the business.

Sgt. Jeffrey (Skipper) Manter said police received a call just after 7 a.m. Sunday from owner Mike Saunier who reported that $400 was missing from the drawers of two cash registers in the retail garden operation in back of his house. Mr. Saunier said he kept $200 in each drawer for startup money for the day, in a small building that he does not lock at night.

When he went to open the store in the morning, the money was gone.

Sergeant Manter said nothing else was taken or disturbed in the robbery. “It appears someone had to have some inside knowledge of the place, nothing else was touched, and they went right for the money . . . apparently they knew where the money was,” he said.

He also warned businesses owners to be diligent about locking up at night.

“It’s not like it used to be [on the Vineyard]; you have to be careful about unlocked doors, cars . . . cash registers. That’s just the reality,” he said.

The investigation is ongoing.