Originally Published: September 22, 2018 1:45 p.m.
COTTONWOOD - It may be too early for the Grinch to be lurking around, but someone hit the Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, 737 S. Main St., stealing tools and delaying work on wheelchair ramps and home repairs.
Power tools and a generator worth about $6,000 to $8000 were stolen during the weekend break-in at the Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity, according to VVHFH staff.
Witnesses even saw the possible thief driving away with a truck-load of items Saturday morning, said staff.
The stolen tools are used by volunteers for ongoing home-building projects for people in the community, including elderly clients and veterans.
Habitat for Humanity has two such projects coming up – a triplex in Sedona beginning in October and a single-family home in Rimrock soon after and needs those tools for the upcoming projects.
“Sadly, last Friday night, Sept. 14, Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity’s mission work was stopped dead in its tracks by the unscrupulous deeds of a cowardly thief who broke into their facility to steal thousands of dollars in construction power tools used in the service to others,” said Tania Simms, executive director of the Verde Valley Habitat of Humanity.
“Without these tools, 14 critical home repair projects and those in urgent need of repairs to their homes are being delayed until these tools can been replaced,” she said.
Habitat for Humanity is reaching out to the community for help with donations of power tools, a generator, or cash to help replace the tools, Simms said.
Many of the power tools that the volunteers use were purchased by Habitat of Humanity, said Andrew Kofile, ReStore general manager. There was a propane generator stolen, battery-powered drills, power-hammer drills, Dewalt and Milwaukee skill saws, coil roof nailers, power nailers.
“Everything you need to build a house,” Kofile said.
“Then it was weird. He stole a lot of other things like boxes of sockets and boxes of regular screwdrivers,” he continued.
Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity does between two and three projects a month, explained Cindy Kofile, director of donor relations. This can include wheelchair ramps or home renovations for the elderly and veterans to help them to continue to live in their homes, she added. “
Kofile said the tools were purchased and acquired over a long period of the time.
The estimated replacement cost is $6,000 to $8000.
“Please contact the Cottonwood Police Dept. at 928-649-1397 or Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity at (928) 649-6788, with any information that will help catch this individual,” Simms said in a press release.
Donations to help replace power tools, a generator, or cash can be made through the VVHFH website at https://vvhabitat.networkforgood.com/.