Thieves made off with a safe and various other items after burglarizing the office of the local Christmas Hamper Society early Tuesday morning.
Society chair, Lorraine Bates, said she received a text at 5:19 a.m. from the alarm company saying the office, which is located within the Albion Fairgrounds on 105 Ave in Maple Ridge, was being broken into.
She said the safe contained approximately $10,000 in gift cards that were to be given out to families in need over the holiday season.
A laptop, external hard drives, power tools, and a first aid kit were taken too.
Last year the society helped around 400 people who were struggling over Christmas. Bates said they were expecting to aid significantly more people this year.
“We’re estimating 800 families are going to need our help this year,” she said. “So our workload will be doubled.”
Bates is upset at the brazen theft.
“I feel sick to my stomach,” she said.
“They might have taken the safe not knowing what it is, but when they pry it open and figure it out, I hope they know who they’re depriving.”
Early RCMP investigation suggests a black pick-up truck might be involved as one was seen leaving the area at a high rate of speed around the time of the incident.
Const. Julie Klaussner said police are looking for any information that may be helpful.
“If you were out walking your dog at the time, possibly have dash camera footage or video surveillance of anything suspicious in the area please contact the police,” she said.
Witnesses are asked to contact Const. Vandelft at Ridge Meadows RCMP, 604-463-6251 and reference file #2020-20784.
Alternatively, anyone with information can call CRIME STOPPERS at 1-800-222-8477 or leave a TIP online at www.solvecrime.ca.