A Dallas Boy Scouts of America troop has been hit with a costly crime.
A crook snuck in and stole their trailer full of tents, cooking and fishing supplies, leaving summer camp canceled and winter camp plans in limbo.
For years, Troop 914 kept a trailer packed with all their camping and educational supplies inside a parking lot at St. Luke Community United Methodist Church.
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Until April 18.
“The person who stole the trailer had bolt cutters, cut through the lock, backed his vehicle in and pulled off with the trailer,” said Howard Dennie, BSA Scoutmaster for Troop 914. “It’s discouraging.”
Dallas police said the investigation has been ‘suspended pending further leads.’
“We can’t pitch a tent because we don’t have any tent,” said Keith Kennedy, BSA Troop 914 Charter Rep. “We can’t take them fishing…We can’t teach cooking. The Dutch oven, all of that’s gone.”
And the theft continues to impact the group.
Summer camp had already been facing cancellation due to COVID-19.
The theft made it official.
“Yeah, it’s not going to happen,” said Jalen Riley Wells, BSA Life Scout. “We’re going to try for winter camp.”
Troop leaders are determined to return to their mission of shaping the lives of dozens of youth, including Black children.
“Scouting is a tool for us to reach our boys,” said Kennedy. “Our trailer is a way for us to reach. The equipment is a way for us to reach and help them understand how to survive and make it as Black men in America.”
Troop 914 is raising funds to replace what’s been taken while teaching future Eagle Scouts about perseverance.
“I have no grudge against whoever took it,” said Wells. “I’m just glad that we’re all coming together to make things better.”
Troop 914 estimates the losses well over $10,000. The trailer is insured but it has a ‘very high deductible and a max payout for the policy,’ according to the leaders.