HEARTLESS crooks broke the window of a Salvation Army charity shop during a late night break in.

The store, in High Street, Colchester, was targeted at around 1am on Saturday morning.

Staff are unsure whether anything was taken, however one of the store's windows has been left damaged.

A Salvation Army Trading Company spokesperson said: “We have an amazing team of staff and volunteers at our shop and receive terrific support from our community as we work hard to raise valuable funds to support the work of The Salvation Army in communities.

"We’re saddened that someone felt they had to resort to breaking in to a charity shop – where people have made donations in good faith to support those who are vulnerable or in need.

“We have opened our shop this morning - vulnerable people depend on the fundraising we do and we’re determined not to let this incident set us back or impact this vital work.”

A spokesman for Essex Police said: "The window of the Salvation Army charity shop in High Street, Colchester, was smashed at about 1am on Saturday, January 12.

"Enquiries are ongoing."

Witnesses or anyone who saw anything around the time should contact 101.