INDIANAPOLIS — A local Boy Scout troop wants answers a week after someone stole its trailer full of supplies right before a camping trip.
Boy Scout Troop 316 was preparing for a weekend trip to camp near Brazil, Ind. when they discovered the trailer was missing from where it was parked at Valley Mills Christian Church off Kentucky Avenue. They believe it happened between last Tuesday and Thursday, but they're still looking for answers a week later.
"Thursday, when we showed up to combine gear and move things around and get ready for departure Friday, it was gone," Jerry Fahrbach said.
Fahrbach is the new member coordinator for the troop, and he has been involved for more than 20 years.
"Usually, they just break in and steal things out of the trailer," he said. "This time, they took the whole thing."
The trailer contained a gas grill, Dutch ovens, lanterns and a large rain shelter. It will all cost hundreds of dollars to replace.
"The worst part is we put things in it we were going to donate to another inner-city troop we were going to help out," Fahrbach said. "That was the most frustrating to me."
Bruce Litton sells trailers and said a lock is the most important investment a person can make when buying a large trailer.
"This just slides over the hitch like that and it has a lock in it," Litton said while demonstrating how to use the lock. "If you make it hard to put a ball in it, for the coupler, they can't pull it."
The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department said you should also avoid parking your trailer in areas that aren't well-lit. When your trailer is not attached to your vehicle, chain it to a large stationary object and secure the items inside.
In the case of the Boy Scouts, unfortunately, the thieves cut off their locks. Now they are working to make sure this doesn't happen again.
"I think we are looking at possibly putting a GPS tracker on the next trailer and maybe wheel locks," Fahrbach said.
They hope the Boy Scouts learn from this experience, not just the negative, but also the positive. Since it happened, the community has stepped up to help with donations to replace supplies that were stolen.
"Whomever did this didn't take anything from me or the adults or the organizations. They took something from the kids in our community," Fahrbach said. "Kids that worked very hard to earn the money that was invested in their future through this equipment and trailer. We are disappointed that we have to invest more time to fundraising now, than pouring into the kids to develop leadership, character, service and teamwork.
"We really would like to get that trailer back, as it enhances what we are able to do, but in the end we are prepared to overcome this obstacle and teach the boys that hard work and perseverance does pay off in the end. We appreciate the support of the community as we replace what was taken."
If you would like to donate to the cause, please make checks out to Boy Scout Troop 316.