Have you ever been the victim of thievery? Last Friday as I proofed over a Baxley Police Report, before giving it to our typesetter, I noticed two incidents that sparked my interest. Two neighboring buildings close to The News-Banner, a business and a nonprofit organization, were reported to have become victims of a thief. One specific item stolen from the businesses was copper tubing from the air conditioning units on the outside of the buildings.
Again, this immediately garnered my attention as my wife, Amy, and I own the old Radio Shack building just across Oak Street from The News-Banner office. It had been a few days since we had been over to the building, so I told her we probably needed to go over and check the building to make sure we had not been hit by the crook (or crooks). We have security measures on all our property, but this would not cover the air conditioning units on the outside of the building.
Sure enough, we checked the units and discovered we had fallen victim to thievery.
What is infuriating about this is that the cost to repair the damage to the air conditioning units is going to cost much more than the thief made off with recycling that little amount of copper.
I recall as a young man that I had worked all summer, in my uncle’s tobacco field and here at the newspaper, to save money to buy school clothes. There was a specific pair of tennis shoes I’d wanted for a very long time and I even remember the brand and type to this day, Asahi Bones. I walked over to Finkelstein’s Department Store (that should tell how long ago this was) and purchased the shoes with my earnings. When I arrived back at the newspaper with my shoes I attempted to put them in my Dad’s truck. It was locked. In my young naivety I placed the shoes on the cab of the truck and walked inside to get a key from my Dad. By the time I returned to unlock the door and put the shoes in the truck, they were gone. Just that fast my shoes were gone. I checked everyday at school to see if I could find the thief. I never did and this event probably shaped my opinions of thievery more than any other time I have been stolen from.
Twice I have had vehicles broken into and items taken. My parents had a large utility trailer that I had put a lot of work into; it was stolen. Each time these events have cost a lot of money to repair damage or to replace the items taken. In all these incidents, I don’t ever recall a person being charged with the crime. Maybe this time will be different.
I know most of you reading this article can probably relate to what I am feeling at this moment. Pure anger. Many of you have probably been victims of thievery. My God tells me that I have to forgive, but this is one area I struggle to forgive people. I will forgive this person, but it will probably take a little while. I guess I’m a little like Jonah with regard to Nineveh, after he preached repentance, when he made himself a place to sit back and watch to see if God would destroy the city. For now I’m sitting back under the shade tree waiting to see if the police will find this thief and see the rightful punishment for his or her crime.
As far as my property is concerned let this be notice that we will be installing additional security measures that should assist law enforcement in expediting the law.