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Charity's Van Stolen; Director Calls Theft 'Disappointing'

This van owned by the Lutheran Mission Society in Brooklyn Park was stolen Tuesday morning. Police ask anyone who sees the vehicle to call them.

This van owned by the Lutheran Mission Society in Brooklyn Park was stolen. Credit: Screenshot from WBAL TV
This van owned by the Lutheran Mission Society in Brooklyn Park was stolen. Credit: Screenshot from WBAL TV

A van used by a charity to distribute food and donations to the area’s needy was stolen early Tuesday morning, say Anne Arundel County Police.

Thieves broke into the gated parking area behind the Brooklyn Park headquarters of the Lutheran Mission Society about 4:30 Tuesday morning.

The Lutheran Mission Society has been serving people in need for more than 100 years. Surveillance video of the theft is dark and foggy, so police couldn't get a good look at the driver, WBAL TV reports.

The mission uses the van to transport supplies to thousands of people throughout Maryland.

"We pick up food. We pick up clothes from people who are just ready to donate to anyone who needs it, and now we can't do that right now, and that really hurt us," the Rev. David Maack, the mission's executive director, told the TV station.

Investigators and mission directors said they believe someone jumped the fence behind the building on Hammonds Lane, broke into the van and then smashed a locked gate to get out.

Police said thieves also took a snowblower and tried to force their way into the warehouse where the mission takes in and organizes donations.

The society has been serving people in need since 1905. All of their donated goods come from individuals and churches.

"If you see this vehicle, call the police. Let's get it returned to its rightful owners because they use this for good. They use this for good things, and we need them to have this vehicle back," said police Lt. T.J. Smith.

The van is a 2011 Nissan with writing on the back and sides. Its license plate is NV2500.

Replacing it will cost the mission about $30,000.

"It's just so disappointing. You try to help people, and then they come and help themselves sometimes like this. It's hard for us to raise money to help other people. Now we've got to raise money to get a new van," Maack said.

Anyone with information on the case can call tips into Metro Crime Stoppers at 866-7-LOCKUP or police at 410-222-6135.

Donations can also be made to the society by clicking here.

Polly April 11, 2014 at 06:26 AM
As if robberies aren't bad enough, this one is reprehensible!
Jay April 14, 2014 at 12:22 PM
I am sure it has been painted and has spinners on it by now!

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