Officers are appealing for information, following the theft of a Poppy collection box in Waterloo.
The incident happened yesterday in the Londis supermarket, St John's Road, at around 7.30am and was reported to officers when the shopkeeper noticed the box was missing.
The offender is described as aged 25-30 years, of slim build with dark hair. He was wearing glasses, denim jeans and a black jacket.
Superintendent Kevin Johnson said: "I'm sure members of this community would agree, that this was a despicable act and we are working hard to trace the person responsible.
"I would urge anyone who was in the area at the time or who recognises the description of this offender to make contact with my officers, so he can be brought to justice."
Officers are speaking with the shopkeeper and CCTV is being examined from the store and nearby area.
Anyone with any information about this incident is asked to contact officers on 0151 777 3888 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.