According to league secretary Trina Heusler, the stolen items included a set of bases, three sets of protective gear for the umpires and a borrowed ATV used to prep the fields before game time.
For the last six months, the equipment was stored in the appropriate equipment container between seasons, said Heusler.
“We don’t really know exactly when the equipment was stolen,” said Heusler about the process of filing the report with Patterson Police Services. “Someone noticed the unit was open and we estimated the break in occurred during winter break. It’s our offseason, so all the gear is locked up and left alone for a while.”
An average of 200 youths will be affected by last minute plunder, and may be a cause for delay due to the proximity of the season’s opening day.
Heusler said the robbery is currently causing a financial burden for the local organization, and comes at a most inopportune time.
“We are right in the middle of sign ups,” she said Thursday, Jan. 16. “February 20 is the last day to sign up and our first game will take place the third week of April. We are trying to take it all in.”
Although there is no information as to who stole the equipment, city officials are presently checking the complex’s surveillance camera for any possible leads.
In the meantime, the local league is in the process of finding an economical solution to the problem, but hopes the community will lend a helping hand as well.
Despite their best efforts, the league believes the robbery will continue to pose a threat to the youth and the league alike.
“Without the appropriate gear, it hinders their game from being able to be played,” said Heusler. “One field is now without bases and we don’t have any protective gear for the umpires. This is a financial burden from an already nonprofit organization.”
If anyone has any information regarding the robbery, they are urged to contact Patterson Police Services at 895-8080.
Contact Brooke Borba at 892-6187, ext. 24 or firstname.lastname@example.org.