HUMBLE, Texas—Police were investigating Tuesday after someone stole $10,000 worth of equipment from a youth football league in Humble.
"All of our power tools are gone. We lost blocking dummies, shields, other football equipment," Gene Pena said as he showed KHOU 11 News around his storage facility at Lindsay Lyons Park. "We did have some brand-new football equipment - -shoulder pads, helmets."
Also missing from the storage unit was a much-used utility cart.
"We set up all our markers – it’s like the key to our operation," Pena said.
All of the items belonged to the Humble Area Football League.
And Pena, the league president, said he has reason to believe the theft was an inside job.
"I think they knew what was in there. I think they knew how to get in there – they knew exactly what we had in there," he said.
The burglars cut a hole in the ceiling and crawled through an air duct into the storage room.
Pena said they also clipped the wires on the park fence, so they could drive out with the utility ATV and onto the road – a brazen move, since Harris County Precinct 4 is just across the street.
"It’s in a county park. It’s locked up. You’d think it’s safe," Pena said.
But with no security cameras and no leads, Pena said the league is now scrambling to get replacement items for the teams. Football season starts in less than two weeks.
"How can you take from little kids," Pena said. "This really hurts a lot of kids, for them to do that, they have to be real low-lifes."
Pena said he hopes the community can step up and help out, since the league’s insurance company won’t.
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If you have information about the crime, call the Harris County Precinct 4 Constable’s Office.