Habitat for Humanity and police are looking for the suspect who broke into the ReStore in Courtenay. Image supplied

Someone breaks into Habitat for Humanity ReStore on Island

Value of damage and thefts at non-profit’s Courtenay store is estimated at $3,000

Habitat for Humanity Vancouver Island North’s (VIN) Thanksgiving weekend started with an unwanted surprise.

Someone broke into its ReStore building in the Comox Valley and made off with cash and several items. The culprit made more than one visit in the early morning hours of Oct. 9. The incident at the 13th Street location in Courtenay took place around 5 a.m.

A lone person was responsible but may have had an accomplice along who did not enter the store. The person who did break into the ReStore was wearing a light-coloured baseball cap and hoodie, a face mask and gloves. The non-profit organization is hoping images from cameras in the store will help them identify the suspect.

The culprit tried to break into the two cash drawers on site but was unable and took stole the whole drawers, then left the building before returning to load up on donated items for prize pick-ups. The person came back yet again to steal two safes that contained the store’s petty cash, till float and cash deposit from the previous day. The organization estimates the value of damage and the thefts to be around $3,000.

The regional chapter of Habitat for Humanity runs the store in the Comox Valley, along with one in Campbell River, to raise funds for its project to build affordable homes for families in the communities. The stores sell gently used furniture, home accessories, building materials, appliances and other items to generate funds for build projects. In Courtenay, Habitat is building homes at a Lake Trail Road site. Last year, eight families moved into homes built by Habitat and its community partners on the North Island.

This year has already posed some challenges for the organization because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the latest annual report for Habitat, executive director Pat McKenna wrote, “Before I talk about 2019, I first want to acknowledge 2020. This has been a year of challenge and transformation. We are all struggling, yet we continue to thrive against adversity, and we will come out of this year more dedicated to our mission than ever before.”

RELATED STORY: Habitat for Humanity re-opens Comox Valley store, build site

The store had to close for a couple of months in the spring due to pandemic restrictions, but both stores reopened, though with reduced hours and measures in place to protect the health and safety of customers. Habitat for Humanity Vancouver Island North has also set up an online store option. It has even re-started up the in-store 50/50 draw.

“Aside from this incident, the reopening has been going very well. The community has been very supportive, and customers are respectful of the new health and safety measures,” Habitat for Humanity VIN director of communications and fundraising Cady Corman said.

Regarding the break-in, anyone with information is asked to contact the Comox Valley RCMP (File number: 20-16541).



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

RCMP

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

 

Habitat for Humanity and police are looking for the suspect who broke into the ReStore in Courtenay. Image supplied

Just Posted

VIU Mariners coach Larry Stefanek. (Black Press File Photo)
Parksville soccer coach Stefanek earns special national certification

VIU Mariners head coach one of 30 in Canada to complete program

A passer-by walks past a COVID-19 testing clinic in Montreal, Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada ‘yet to see’ deaths due to recent COVID surge as cases hit 200,000

Much of the increase in case numbers can be attributed to Ontario and Quebec

Police confirm human remains were found in a recycling bin in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Human remains found in recycling bin floating near Vancouver beach

Police asking nearby residents to see if their recycling bin has gone missing

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson visits a North Vancouver daycare to announce his party’s election promises for child care, Oct. 9, 2020. (B.C. Liberal Party video)
B.C. parties pitch costly child care programs in pandemic

B.C. Liberals say they’ll deliver on NDP’s $10-a-day promise for lower-income families

A B.C. man decided to create a website to help people find family doctors accepting patients. Because Victoria is considered high-demand, clinic openings can’t be posted publicly. (Unsplash)
Vancouver Island man starts website that connects B.C. residents with doctors

Nanaimo man started project to help people find family physicians accepting patients

Voting station at Tzeachten Hall in the riding of Chilliwack-Kent on the first day of advance voting in the provincial election on Oct. 15, 2020. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. VOTES 2020: 380,000 British Columbians head to polls in first 4 days of advance voting

Some of highest voter turnout so far has been seen on Vancouver Island and in Shuswap

Grant and Barbara Howse, in quarantine in Invermere. Mike Turner photo
Denied entry into U.S., Kootenay couple still forced to quarantine for 2 weeks

The rules around crossing the U.S. border led to a bizarre situation for an Invermere couple

Fort St. John councillor Trevor Bolin (B.C. Conservative Party)
BC Conservatives leader fights back after BC Liberals leak 2018 workplace harassment case

Sexual harassment case was connected to employee being terminated, WorkSafeBC found

Employee Sophia Lovink shows off a bag of merchandise in Toronto on Thursday, June 11, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Canada gets C-average grade on 2nd year of cannabis legalization

Cannabis Council of Canada releases report card on federal government and legalization

Most Read