LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Authorities in Deridder say a recent break-in at the city’s animal control facility could have been much worse.
Not only were several dogs released from their kennels, but the main office was ransacked along with dozens of case files destroyed.
“The window was busted out... there were cameras on the interior of the building..they stole all the cameras," said Sgt. Richard Muro.
Along with 10 years worth of case files damaged by what investigators believe to be gasoline. Sergeant Richard Muro said the suspect also damaged thousands of dollars worth of community donations.
“They stole two weed eaters, which was property that belonged to the city...a little bit of damage in the kennels," said Muro. The sad thing is the dogs could have been a lot worse, but thank goodness that they stuck around and we were able to get them back to safety.”
Sgt. Muro says more along with more than 1,500 pounds of dog food being contaminated, so were dozens of food donations that were supposed to be utilized for their elderly program, which helps feed local senior citizens.
“60 bags that were donated from Brookshire Brothers, they took that, poured gasoline on it...so we lost food that was for the senior citizens,” said Muro.
In addition to the physical damage, Muro says the suspect also left a personal message on the wall. Detectives have yet to determine the meaning behind it.
“Somebody wrote you killed my dog...Every dog I take into my kennel, I’m mandated by state and law to have a history on how I got it, when I got it, where I got it,” Muro said. “We are not aware of any animals having been euthanized within recent months, or are aware of any controversies around any of the dogs brought into the facility within that timeframe.”
With all things considered, Muro says it’s situations like these that show how a community can come together.
"Up till a few minutes ago, I had a 100 percent adoption rate...We all have to work together as a community...so if you know something or see something..step forward either anonymously to provide that information to the department.
Thankfully, they were able to retrieve all the dogs that were let out. At this time, there are no leads in the case.
The security cameras and computer systems were taken out during the break-in.
If anyone has any information as to the suspects in the crime, contact Deridder Police at 337-462-8911. A reward is offered.