KODIAK — A burglary occurred overnight Wednesday at the Salvation Army building on Mission Road. Evidence of the break-in was discovered Thursday morning by Maj. Lola Davis.
A safe was broken into and a bar of silver was taken, as well as a laptop computer, some petty cash and other miscellaneous items.
“They even took my candy jar, and left the lid,” said Davis, pointing to a white ceramic lid sitting on her desk. Near the back door, a number of pieces of candy littered the floor.
A large flat-screen TV had been staged near the exit, but was left.
“That TV was stashed to go,” said Maj. Dave Davis, co-officer and chaplain at Kodiak’s Salvation Army branch.
The intruder(s) entered the building through the fire escape door. There was evidence that a crowbar or some other prying instrument was used because the bolt had been pushed in and the door frame damaged.
Lola Davis’ office, where the safe is kept, was sought out and broken into.
Fortunately, Dave Davis said, the cash collected that day had already been deposited in the bank. The Salvation Army is currently collecting cash and coins during a “Jingle in July” drive.
“We do daily deposits,” Davis said.
All that was in the safe was the ceremonial bar of silver, which weighs one troy ounce, Lola Davis said.
More discouraging than the stolen property was the destruction done inside the building, Dave Davis said. The back door and at least three interior doors were damaged, his office was ransacked and the safe was destroyed.
Dave Davis thought the crime may have been committed by somebody who had a vendetta against him. His office door was kicked in violently, and the lock was torn off. All the other doors had been pried open.
“It means it’s probably somebody I’ve had to discipline or correct,” he said.
Majors Lola and Dave Davis became officers at the Kodiak Salvation Army branch, also a church, a thrift store, a rooming house and a meeting place for community groups like Alcoholics Anonymous, in 1998. They managed the facility for nine years before being assigned to other posts on the West Coast. In July of 2016, they returned.
Dave Davis said he’s noticed an increase in crime since returning to his old post.
“We were here for nine years and never had a problem,” he said. “We used to leave the doors open. Since we’ve been back the thrift store has been broken into twice.”
He attributed the shift to a change in mindset among people.
“It could be that people feel like they have nothing to protect,” he said. “They feel like they’re victims. It’s ironic that we are here to try to help people.”
Dave Davis was glad that more damage wasn’t done, but was also baffled by the brazenness of the act. He pointed to a small red collections box, like a piggy bank about the size of a softball, with a dented coin slot on top.
“They even tried to break into this thing,” he said.
His spirits were not completely down, though. He pointed out that the intruders managed to pry open a fortified safe, but were stymied by a tiny quarter-sized lock on an armoire in the meeting room.
“They couldn’t crack the 50-cent lock,” he said with a laugh, pointing to the dented metal. “All that was in there were A.A. pamphlets anyway.”
“What’s that line?” he said. “I guess no good deed goes unpunished.”
The State Troopers are investigating the incident, and are seeking help in identifying the suspect(s).