A knife-wielding robber stole a floor safe containing about $1,700 from a city animal-control office run by the Pennsylvania SPCA and then fled in one of the agency's red trucks.
The man arrived at the Animal Care and Control Team office, 311 W. Hunting Park Ave., about 3:55 a.m. and claimed he had a sick dog, according to the PSPCA.
Inside the facility, he put a knife to an employee's neck and demanded money, police said. The thief then took the unbolted floor safe and made his getaway in SPCA truck 303.
"It's a pretty bright red, pretty noticeable-looking vehicle," resembling a boxy ambulance, said PSPCA spokeswoman Wendy Marano.
Reports that the safe contained a five-figure sum were incorrect, she said.
"We did an accouting. We believe it was more in the $1,700 range," she said. "We don't keep that kind of cash in our building."
The money was receipts from adoptions, licenses and other fees collected over the weekend, she said.
The employee was uninjured.
Images of the perpetrator were captured on surveillance video, but were being withheld as the investigation gets underway, she said.