Wire thieves ripped up the sheet rock and roofing at the Steamboat Island Cooperative Preschool overnight Tuesday, causing $5,000 in damage, according to the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.
Staff arrived Wednesday morning at the school in the 6200 block of 41st Avenue to find it ransacked, with copper and other electrical wiring ripped from the walls, Thurston County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ken Clark said.
Clark said it is “very odd” for wire thieves to steal wiring from a building that is in use. Typically, they steal from buildings that are under construction, he said.
The sheriff’s report notes, however, that the school is on a “secluded, wooded property,” and that may have made it an attractive site for the thieves, Clark said.
Alton Huckaby, president of the preschool, emailed a statement to The Olympian on Wednesday afternoon saying that parents and alumni are committed to the keeping the school’s doors open.
Huckaby’s statement continued, “Our preschool alumni have been amazing in keeping the doors open for the last 40-plus years, and now we need help to ensure we get those doors back open. We are reaching out to all contractors, licensed electricians and/or potential donors. We are a nonprofit, so services rendered, money donated or products provided are tax deductible.”
Huckaby said community members can email steamboat
firstname.lastname@example.org if they are able to assist.
The Sheriff’s Office has recovered video surveillance footage from the theft and will review it as part of the investigation, Clark said.
The Steamboat Island Cooperative Preschool celebrated its 40th anniversary last year.
Anyone with information on the burglary should call the detectives division of the Sheriff’s Office at 360-786-5530.
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445 email@example.com