D.C. police released this video in their search for two people sought in connection with a burglary at a Salvation Army facility in Southeast Washington. (D.C. Police)

A thief who broke into the Salvation Army community center in Southeast D.C. early Sunday absconded with a “substantial” amount of cash after threatening a security guard with a knife, the charity said.

A Salvation Army spokesman said the proceeds from Wednesday, Friday and Saturday’s “red kettle” collections had not yet been counted, but were stored in a safe at the Solomon G. Brown Corps Community Center, 2300 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave.

The aftermath of a break-in to a Salvation Army facility in Southeast D.C. over the weekend. The theft cccurred at 2300 Martin Luther King Ave. SE. (Courtesy of Salvation Army)

It’s not known if the safe was unlocked or if the burglar was able to open the safe himself. The thief got into the building about 5 a.m. and caused “significant property damage,” the spokesman said. A security guard who interrupted the crime was threatened with a knife, but was not physically harmed. The guard called 911 after the burglar fled.

“We hope all of the money taken will be returned. These were funds donated by the community to help locally struggling families who reside in Southeast D.C.,” Major Lewis Reckline, commander of The Salvation Army National Capital Area Command, said in a statement. In the past year, that five-year-old community center assisted 4,011 people who live in Wards 7 and 8.