by Brian Orr
WALSENBURG- Perhaps it’s an economic indicator, or maybe juveniles getting more brazen, but robberies and break-ins around Walsenburg seem to be on a major upsurge.
Most recently, the Calvary Baptist Church on Pennsylvania St. was burglarized, with the thieves getting away with the cash in the donation box, the sound system up by the alter, and two computers in the back room. Bad karma is apparently not a deterrent with these guys. Kathy Tatman, speaking on behalf of the church, said the officer investigating the crime did a very thorough job. She said, “although it is devastating to have this sort of thing happen, we are very thankful and grateful as it could have been much worse.”
Ralph Salazar, who lives on Cedar St. said he had someone try to break into his house at night, but they were scared off by his dog barking. Nevertheless, the perpetrators did steal his wheel barrow and garden hose which were outside. Salazar is now planning to string barbed wire around his property.
According to Walsenburg Police Chief Larry Baldonado, the police have seven reports of burglaries since Jan.11. The “rumor mill” has that number as much higher.
Baldonado said he has reports of burglaries at:
• Indiana St., where coins and passport were taken.
•A burglary on Harrison St, where a TV, DVDs and golf clubs were stolen.
• A burglary on Elm St, where weapons, a TV, DVDs and a PlayStation were stolen.
• A burglary at Stacey Drive were jewelry was stolen, and has since been recovered.
• A burglary at the Crossroads building, were computer equipment was stolen,
• A burglary on Colorado St, where a truck was stolen and later recovered in Missouri.
Baldonado goes on to say, “As a result of follow-up on this cases a search warrant was obtained for 122 E. Pennsylvania Street apartment #7. The warrant was executed on Sunday March 29, 2009. Recovered from the apartment were computers, computer monitors and several car stereos and a gun. The officers are following up on several leads that we are confident will result in arrests being made and cases cleared.”
Baldonado said he has stepped up patrols in the north and east ends of Walsenburg. “Burglars and other criminals strike where residents don′t look out for each other and do not call the police when they observe suspicious activity. When suspicious activity is observed call the police.”