‘Police are outnumbered’ says Okanagan business owner hit by theft

Maela’s Esthetics offering reward for stolen laptop and suggestions for increased safety

Two suspects were caught on video surveillance behind Maela’s Esthetics following a break-in Saturday morning. (Maela’s Esthetics photo)

A downtown Vernon business devastated by a recent break in, says the community needs to reclaim its city.

Maela’s Esthetics and Hair by Samantha Marie was broken into around 1:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 1. A window was smashed at the shop, in the 3000 block of 30th Street, and an ASUS laptop was stolen and a grey cash box was reported missing.

Video surveillance shared to Facebook showed two suspects walking down the back alley, “tucking my laptop back into their backpack,” shortly after the time of the incident, owner Maela Bru wrote in a post.

She is so desperate to get the laptop back she is offering a reward.

“It has our salon software on it, which is useless to anyone but means everything to us. We can’t make any income without appointments and our clients contact info,” said Bru, adding the laptop still had the stickers on it and was like new, but thieves failed to get the charging cable.

“This is my worst nightmare.

“We are completely lost without it and unable to book appointments,” she said, adding while they have been downtown for six years without any problems, this is the latest in a series of unfortunate events for the local business.

Earlier on Friday, Bru chased someone off who was, “literally packing a crack pipe outside our door.”

Add that to the endless garbage and empties she picks up outside and tags from stolen property in the back alley, and Bru is fed up.

“I was born here, it used to be totally different,” she said.

Even the RCMP officer who attended the scene said aside from putting bars on her windows and having surveillance, there’s not much business owners can do.

“The police officer was even like, ‘we get these calls every day.’ There’s just really nothing they (police) could do. These people (thieves) know that, they know there’s no recourse.”

Bru suggests Vernon looks at what other communities are doing to deter and prevent crime.

“There’s different cities that are putting cameras on the streets,” she said, questioning why Vernon hasn’t looked into that.

While there used to be groups such as the Okanagan Community Watch and Polson Avengers, both have since disbanded, but Bru would like to see similar efforts reborn in Vernon.

“There’s lot of cases in communities where they get groups of people who walk around town, just to have a presence,” she said. “The community needs to step up because the police are outnumbered.”

In the meantime, while Bru panics to try and determine what bookings she has, she urges clients with any upcoming appointments to call or email the shop.

RCMP have investigated but have not identified any suspects in relation to the break in.

READ MORE: Suspect arrested in brazen Vernon armed robbery

READ MORE: Man charged in armed robbery of Salmon Arm liquor store opts for jury trial


@VernonNews
newsroom@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Crime

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Interior Health leading the way with innovative therapy for stroke patients

Percentage of ischemic stroke patients who received treatment has risen dramatically

Neskonlith chief lays blame for ongoing protests at feet of Justin Trudeau

Secwepemc leader hopes others will follow CP’s lead in asking prime minister to talk to Wet’suwet’en

Human rights complaint against Shuswap grocer dismissed

Janet Letendre, a Seventh-Day Adventist, was scheduled to work on her Sabbath

Salmon Arm Silverbacks bound for playoff showdown versus Victoria Grizzlies

Shuswap team tohave home-ice advantage to start the series

Salmon Arm man arrested after damaged safe found in truck

Forty year old facing charges of break and enter, possession of stolen property

VIDEO: Minister says consider coronavirus outbreak when planning for spring break

Foreign Affairs minister points to rash of new cases appearing in places like Italy and Iran

Donations pour in for family who lost father, son in fatal crash on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Beer and burgers to raise cash for Vernon man fighting cancer

Fundraiser hosted in honour of Garnet the Great to send him to special treatment centre

HERGOTT: Idiocy of distracted driving

Paul Hergott is a personal injury lawyer based in West Kelowna

Kelowna man arrested after all-night crime spree

Shawn Bell, 33, is facing seven charges for incidents committed within a 24-hour span

Hollywood actor Chris Pratt shows Kamloops love on social media

The filming of Jurassic World 3 is underway in Merritt and area

B.C. man who pulled a gun on off-duty cop gets two years in prison

Encounter also led police to a home where 100 guns and explosives were found

Flip-flopping pleas in Surrey woman’s 2018 murder in West Kelowna

Following an shocking guilty plea on Feb. 25, Tejwant Danjou applied to retract that plea on Feb. 26

Most Read