Burglar Steals From BA Nonprofit That Helps Developmentally Disabled

Monday, May 11th 2015, 11:25 pm
By: News On 6

The search is on for a burglar who stole from the developmentally disabled and is forcing a longtime Broken Arrow nonprofit to use funds to replace what was taken.

You'd think the big gate would keep most intruders out, but in this case it didn't keep a burglar from breaking into A New Leaf garden center and stealing from charity.

Employee, Tiffney Talbot said it's a place where the developmentally disabled bloom and grow. A New Leaf nursery employs people with disabilities like Down syndrome or autism.

"They definitely grow here. They have relationships here. They change. They have a sense of pride when they do a job that's well done," she said.

Talbot said someone targeted the nursery to support their own lifestyle when a burglar broke in through the back window, crept into the office, stole a computer monitor and then went for the cash register.

Staff member Jordan Didier wants to know who could steal from a place like this and worries the clients they serve won't feel as safe.

"There were papers kind of thrown around where our register is, so, luckily our register is bolted down, but it was pretty evident they tried to take the register as well," Didier said.

Talbot said, "Anything outside of the range of a normal day it definitely affects them, and they are a little bit more vulnerable."

A New Leaf has the funds to replace the computer monitor, and reinforce windows and doors, but it's money that could've been spent elsewhere.

"Those funds could be used to provide services to individuals, but instead they have to be used to replace the monitor," Didier said.

Now, the nursery is counting on its big Memorial Day sale to help recoup the costs.

Police do not have leads on a suspect.

Their Memorial Day sale starts Monday, May 18 and runs through May 23. During the sale, all vegetable plants will be 99 cents and hanging baskets will be 25 percent off the regular price of $15.