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BSUSD: Targets of Theft


Last updated 5/11/2024 at 8:05am

The Borrego Springs Unified School District is once again the target of theft, with two incidents occurring on consecutive weekends, as the suspects stole materials and equipment worth nearly over $43,000.

In the first incident happened on April 13, around 4 p.m., at the High School campus. The suspect entered the campus with a ladder, and attempted to break into the woodshop/mechanical building via the roof. Despite their attempts being unsuccessful, the suspect ended up walking away with a battery.

Thankfully the cameras captured multiple images of the suspect, and the local sheriffs department is handling the investigation.

The second incident, sadly, happened in broad daylight the following weekend on April 21 between 12:45 p.m. at 6 p.m., with the suspects coming onto the Elementary School Campus/Transportation Yard.

The suspects broke into multiple heavy duty containers, three maintenance vehicles, three containers, and a storage shed.

The suspects first arrived on campus around 12:45 p.m., and left at about 1:30 p.m., with a floor jack, according to the cameras.

However, it seemed that wasn't enough, and the individuals had come back onto campus shortly thereafter.

The suspects meticulously covered some of the cameras with a black cloth, which has since been recovered. According to the cameras timestamp, the suspects had left at about 6 p.m.

An estimated list of what was taken:

Milwaukee Tool Box (Pack Out)

Milwaukee Pack Out compartments

Milwaukee 18 Volt Cordless Combo

Makita 18 volt combo kit (7 pieces)

Makita 18 volt Hammer Drill

Makita 18 volt battery pack

Milwaukee 18 volt battery pack

Makita 18 volt LXT cordless Multi-tool

Stihl FS 91R

Stihl weed Trimmer

Push lawn mower (Honda)

Stihl Blowers (Handheld)

Stihl Backpack blowers

Electrical Tool Bag

20-inch Pole Chain Saw

Dewalt Pressure washer (3200 PSI) (4200 PSI)

3000 W Pure Sine Wave Inverter

Snake (100-foot)

Milwaukee Cordless drain cleaner

Snap on Wrench Set

Launch Scan Tool – Auto

Launch Scan Tool – Diesel

Volcom Welder

Volcom Plasma Cutter

Volcom Welding cart: Holds Helmet, Gear and CO2Bottles

Milwaukee Sawzall

Daytona Floor Jacks

Ford Batteries

The estimated cost (at the time of print) was about $20,000 in ground maintenance and $20,000 in mechanic tools.

"We are looking to secure the campuses better and are taking another look at our security, which is unfortunate, because how much more can we do without 24/7 security. We have upgraded our camera system at the transportation yard, we have additional lighting and installed more fencing, but they still managed to get through," BSUSD Director of Business Services Jessica Gillespie said. "We have reached out to the local police department and they will increase patrol and additional checks on the evenings and weekends."

Gillespie also added that with these incidents, it takes away resources from the educators.

"We're making sure that we're deterring as much as we can and ultimately, making sure that the students and staff are safe on campus," Gillespie said.

The District is currently making the necessary arrangements to replace the many items taken.

There are speculations circulating that this may be an "inside job," however, Gillespie reiterated that the District thoroughly goes through applications and background checks for its employees, and does not believe it is anyone associated with the District.

There are currently no suspects in question at this time, as the BSUSD hopes someone will come forward with information. The District is currently working with the local sheriffs, who continue to be responsive.

If anyone has any information regarding this incident and/or recognizes the suspects, are encouraged to contact the District Office at 760-767-5357 or the local police department at 760-767-5656.

This is, again, not the first time this has happened to the BSUSD. Back in January of 2022, thieves cut the fence into the District's transportation yard and made way with a golf cart, table saw and a camera. They had also tampered with the electrical boxes in attempts to cut the power. At the high school, multiple storages were broken into with bolt cutters.

Then in November of 2022, a suspect made off with multiple items, including tool boxes, tools, gas cans and many custodial items.

After these incidents, the District moved forward with the steps of installing the extra security measures. Unfortunately, these bold suspects still decided to do the unthinkable.

The District will be taking a look at the additional steps to ensure the safety of its students, staff and campus in hopes this incident does not occur again.