Lots of burglaries are described as break-ins. But one that occurred over the weekend at a big-box store in Northern Virginia — and involved thousands of dollars of merchandise — might be better described as a breakout.

A Target store in the Woodbridge area of Prince William County was burglarized Saturday, and iPads and other items valued at about $10,000 were stolen.

The burglar apparently got into the store the same way as everybody else, then managed to hide until after business hours.

Based on a review of surveillance footage, the police said, “It is believed the suspect hid in the store prior to closing.”

A Web site listed Friday night’s closing time as 10 p.m. and Saturday opening at 8 a.m.

Target merchandise usually includes hardware, and the police said the burglar was “seen using tools from the store” to break into locked cabinets in the store.

After taking property, the burglar apparently faced the question of how to get out of the locked store.

As in many buildings, the store in the 2400 block of Prince William Parkway had emergency exits. Signs on such exits warn that using them will trigger an alarm.

The burglar was undeterred. Police said that in response to the alarm, they arrived at the store at 3:29 a.m. Saturday. A rear emergency door was ajar, they said. The burglar, however, was gone.

Police described him as white, between 16 and 24 years old, 5 feet 10 and 130 pounds, with short brown hair.

He was last seen, police said, in a hooded sweatshirt, dark colored jeans and black sneakers.