Police Search for Thieves Accused of Stealing Hundreds of Bikes Meant for Needy Children
A group of thieves in Washington state stole hundreds of brand-new bikes and helmets that had been meant for needy children this Christmas.
Waste Connections of Washington – a waste management company – said a group of seven to ten thieves broke into a trailer in Vancouver, Washington, holding 700 donated bikes, making off with about 200 bikes and half of the helmets at 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday.
The organization said it raised more than $55,000 to buy around 700 bikes for less-fortunate children for Christmas this year, adding that it had planned to assemble and distribute the bikes throughout Clark County on Saturday.
The bikes were meant to be gifted to kids ages 3-5 who would not be able to afford them, KOIN reported. It’s all part of the Scott Campbell Christmas Promise. He was with Waste Connections in Vancouver and ever since he passed away, the company has been keeping the tradition alive.
Cyndi Holloway, who works for Waste Connections, described the theft as “heartbreaking to say the least.”
“Heartbreaking to be honest,” Waste Connections of Washington’s Cyndi Holloway told KPTV. “It was heartbreaking, to say the least. I think it is more heartbreaking that you are taking from the kids.”
Vancouver Police said a street sweeper interrupted the theft and got in touch with employees at the local Walmart near the trailer’s location.
“You’re doing it for the kids and you want them to have that feeling and it’s unfortunate that it happens and you know at the end of the day, it’s only a thing, but it’s the feeling we want to give and to keep going for Scott,” organizer Jason Fish said.
Overnight, thieves stole upwards of 200 bikes from a locked trailer at the Wal-Mart at SE 192nd Ave/Mill Plain in Vancouver. Volunteers have been busy all night trying to get more bikes. The ones stolen were meant for kids across Clark Co (these pics from past events) #KOIN6News pic.twitter.com/l3fK3Rp66I— Cole Miller (@ColeKOIN) December 5, 2018
This was the eighth year the company had raised funds to build bikes for the less fortunate in Clark County.
The organization said it plans to recoup their losses by Christmas and is working with the local Walmart to obtain replacement bikes. Now volunteers are stepping up to keep Scott’s Christmas promise alive.
In all, 700 bikes will be donated to kids who have been promised a bike during a small parade in downtown Vancouver on December 12.
Vancouver Police said authorities are still searching for the suspects and are asking anyone with information leading to an arrest to contact the department.