Playtime hasn’t been the same for the children at a local day care after a summertime Grinch stole toys and equipment Monday morning from their playground.
Someone stole two tricycles and sports equipment that were bought with the money from a fundraiser held earlier in the year, said Michelle Chavez, owner Turquoise Child Development Center.
Chavez said someone had jumped the fence, landed on the roof of one of the playhouses and collapsed it to gain access to the playground. She said the person or persons then removed the metal tricycles and several sports equipment items, including soccer balls, footballs, basketballs and baseball bats.
“For the first couple of days the older children just stood around during play time; they are usually playing basketball or kickball” Chavez said. “It was also obvious that the younger children were missing the tricycles.”
Chavez said she has operated the day care for four years and this burglary is the first one that has occurred there during that time. She said she and the staff have noticed other items that are missing throughout the week.
Chavez said some of the stolen items were recovered and returned to the day care by the Tucumcari Police Department. She said there is still some equipment missing and she is not sure how the day care will replace the items.
“Having a fundraiser is the only way we can raise money to buy new equipment,” Chavez said. “Our earlier fundraiser allowed us to upgrade the playground equipment and buy the sports equipment.”
Chavez said she feels that holding another fundraiser wouldn’t be as successful at this point in the year.
“Any donations by the public would be greatly appreciated,” Chavez said