With severe storm season here, the timing for one crime victim couldn't be worse. Thieves have targeted a storm shelter business. They stole $60,000 worth of equipment the company uses to install underground storm shelters.
Milton Odom had just returned with a load of underground storm shelter molds for his business, Down Under Shelters, when he noticed something was very wrong where he keeps his equipment near 30th and Sheridan.
"They had cut one link off all these chains," Odom said.
Everything was chained and locked, and even connected to concrete blocks sunk into the ground, but thieves got just about everything Odom needs for his business.
"If they have no more purpose in life and no more self-esteem than to take someone else's property, they've got a really bad self-esteem," he said.
Odom lost a 1998 Dodge truck, a 16 foot, black, dump bed trailer, a new yellow, Yanmar brand excavator and orange concrete buggies on rubber tracks.
"It's a kick in the teeth, the hardest thing is going to be getting replacements for the little candy com concrete buggies," Odom said.
He said those buggies used to haul dirt and concrete through narrow gates are hard to find at an affordable price. For a new business just a few months old, losing the equipment is hard to overcome.
"This could out us in a world of hurt, if not under," Odom said.
Odom doesn't have much of a choice but to delay some installations of the below ground shelters, until either his equipment is found, or he figures out what to do.
He doesn't know how the thieves can look at themselves in the mirror.
"I may not wish evil on them, but I wouldn't mind them having a few restless nights over this," said Odom.
Odom thinks the theft may have happened between 7:00 and 8:00 Sunday morning, because someone has told him they thought they saw his truck and equipment taking the Coweta exit off the Broken Arrow Expressway.
Anyone who sees the equipment should call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.