Frozen meat stolen from Bay Roberts food bank

The Compass - - Sports - TC ME­DIA ed­i­tor@cb­n­com­pass.ca

Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing an overnight break-in at a food bank and thrift store in Bay Roberts.

A board rep­re­sent­ing 12 lo­cal church parishes op­er­ates The Help­ing Hand, with rev­enue from an as­so­ci­ated thrift store sup­port­ing its food bank. It serves an es­ti­mated 120 clients monthly.

We’ve got to re­place our back door and our front door, be­cause that’s the way they tried to get in with a crow­bar, but they were un­suc­cess­ful, and once they were un­suc­cess­ful with that, (they) de­cided to beat out a win­dow.

— Darlene Kear­ley

It was Thurs­day morn­ing, Feb. 23 that staff no­ticed the break- in, which oc­curred shortly af­ter 3 a.m. ac­cord­ing to se­cu­rity cam­era footage. Tur­keys and hams left­over from the Christ­mas food drive and more frozen food items were stolen. An un­known but rel­a­tively small sum of money was also taken.

Help­ing Hand man­ager Darlene Kear­ley told The Com­pass the tur­keys and hams were due to be dis­trib­uted for Easter.

“It’s not only that too, but it was the dam­age they left us with,” she said last week. “Right now we’ve got to re­place a win­dow, be­cause they smashed a win­dow. We’ve got to re­place our back door and our front door, be­cause that’s the way they tried to get in with a crow­bar, but they were un­suc­cess­ful, and once they were un­suc­cess­ful with that, (they) de­cided to beat out a win­dow.”

Sgt. Brent Hil­lier told The Com­pass Wed­nes­day Bay Roberts RCMP re­trieved phys­i­cal ev­i­dence from the food bank and has a sus­pect iden­ti­fied, though no ar­rests have been made.

Mean­while, Kear­ley hopes the re­lease of video footage from the break-in will help catch the cul­prit.

The black-and-white footage cap­tured by a se­cu­rity cam­era shows a heav­ily clothed in­di­vid­ual walk­ing up the front steps of The Help­ing Hand with their head tilted down­ward.

The per­son starts to pull a mask over their face be­fore at­tempt­ing to gain en­try with what’s be­lieved to be a crow­bar. The video was recorded at 3:12 a.m.

Over the course of al­most a dozen years work­ing at The Help­ing Hand, Kear­ley can re­call at least three break-ins, with the oth­ers fo­cused on money rather than food.

“It’s kind of scary, you know.”

Eleven-year-old Kee­ley Turn­bull was named Snowflake Princess for the 2017 Vic­to­ria Win­ter Car­ni­val. Sharon was one of 21 girls to take part in the event, held Feb. 10.

TC ME­DIA FILE PHOTO

Darlene Kear­ley man­ages The Help­ing Hand food bank and thrift store in Bay Roberts.

VIDEO IM­AGE

A still im­age taken from se­cu­rity footage cap­tured out­side an en­trance of The Help­ing Hand food bank and thrift store Thurs­day, Feb. 23.

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