Friday, August 19, 2011

Burglars vandalize Pickwick Belle

By Ronnie Thomas staff writer at The Decatur Daily

One or more persons boarded the Pickwick Belle riverboat while it was docked at Ingalls Harbor overnight and burglarized and vandalized it, authorities said.

Sgt. John Crouch, a spokesman for the Decatur Police Department, said boat operators discovered the theft at 8:45 a.m. Friday.

“They entered the boat from the pier side and went over to the river side, where they broke out a window on an emergency exit,” Crouch said. “They stole about $23,000 worth of electronics, including flat-screen televisions and a sound system.

Crouch said the culprits discharged one or more fire extinguishers inside the boat.

Tami Reist, director of the Decatur-Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau, spoke to The Daily while cruising on the boat Friday.

“I got a call about 10 a.m.,” she said. “We called police and they came out and did an investigation. “But we weren’t going to let someone damper our spirits and ruin our party. We couldn’t serve out of the dining room because they sprayed the fire extinguisher all over the carpet. We’re cruising out on the top deck.”


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