The El 7 Mares at César Chávez Ave is the original location for the well-known Southern California chain. Photo by Ricky Rodas.

Police are on the lookout for three burglars who stole about $20,000 from El 7 Mares restaurant, a notable seafood institution on César Chávez Avenue in Boyle Heights. 

The theft took place in the office of the El 7 Mares restaurant. Photo by Ricky Rodas.

The incident occurred Wednesday around 4:40 a.m, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. The suspects were caught on camera using power tools to open the security gate of the 7 Mares parking lot where their office building is located next to the restaurant. The burglars then broke the glass door and successfully opened  the safe. After breaking in, the suspects fled the scene in an unknown type of vehicle.

Tania Diaz, the daughter of the restaurant’s owner Sergio Diaz, told The Boyle Heights Beat that the robbers arrived just before the lot’s opening at 5 a.m. Some employees pulled up to the premises just in time to see the suspects speed away and called 911.

“They saw them get in a truck and drive off,” Diaz said.

El 7 Mares at César Chávez Ave in Boyle Heights opened in 1968. Photo by Ricky Rodas.

This isn’t the first time El 7 Mares has been the target of a robbery. Burglars have attempted to break into the lot in the past year and a half but did not have the right equipment. Diaz said she isn’t sure why El 7 Mares was hit and is more concerned with making sure the safety of their customers is secured.

“Many people in this neighborhood know us and come to this business so we don’t want them to feel unsafe,” Diaz said. 

In 1968, The Diaz family opened the first El 7 Mares location at 2747 East César Chavez Ave. Tania’s father Sergio, who is from Zacatecas, Mexico and grew up in Boyle Heights, worked in many restaurants in LA and Mexico before opening the now famous restaurant. There are now seven locations in Southern California but the one on César Chávez still remains her family’s pride and joy. 

She and her nine siblings grew up coming to the restaurant and working every job one can do at a restaurant, including washing dishes. 

“It’s a big family of many siblings and we all contribute our time and energy into the business and it is sad to see that someone comes and takes your hard work,” Diaz said. 

The LAPD is currently investigating the incident but no individuals had been arrested Thursday. 

Ricky Rodas is a community reporter for Boyle Heights Beat via the CA Local News Fellowship. Rodas, who is Salvadoran American, grew up in the San Gabriel Valley and attended Cal State LA. He is also a...

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  1. How bad do things have to get before these idiots are caught? Where is the the LAPD? I have not seen a LAPD squad car on patrol in months. Thieves now know when too strike and the best time to avoid getting caught. This has to stop one way or the other.

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