Burglars hit clubs, shops in spree

Wodonga Diamonds was broken into at the weekend.
Wodonga Diamonds was broken into at the weekend.

WODONGA Diamonds Soccer Club and a Wodonga automotive business were the latest targets at the weekend for a spate of burglaries plaguing the city.

Police are investigating at least six burglaries on businesses and community groups in the past fortnight, including the Wodonga Men’s Shed.

They are urging the public to come forward with any information that could help their investigation.

Detective acting Sergeant Ian Deverell said it was especially disappointing to see charity and sporting groups targeted, given they were largely self-funded and often working towards a community-wide benefit.

“It’s a big hit for them, more so in terms of the damage that needs to be repaired,” he said.

“It really affects everyone associated with those clubs.”

Sgt Deverell said the offenders smashed the front glass door of the Diamonds’ clubrooms about 3.15am on Saturday and tried to gain access to other rooms.

An alarm was triggered and the would-be thieves fled.

Police are still investigating whether anything was stolen but at least $700 worth of damage was caused.

Offenders also kicked in the front glass door of Rapid Hose Systems in Sanyo Drive about 6.30am yesterday.

An alarm was activated and again the offenders took off; the owner was yesterday still completing a stocktake to see if anything had been stolen.

Those crimes are in addition to several others in recent weeks, including:

  • Wodonga Football Club between 9pm on June 19 and 12pm on June 20. A small amount of cash was taken plus damage caused to a door.
  • J&L Perri Automotive bet- ween 5.30pm and 7am the same night. Nothing was stolen.
  • Wodonga Men’s Shed on June 19, but left when an alarm was triggered.
  • Wodonga Golf Club on June 21 about 3am, with CCTV footage revealing three offenders. A small amount of cash was stolen.

Other thefts include last week’s 24th break-in at Gateway Island’s La Maison Cafe.

Det Sgt Deverell said though little had been taken, it did not take away from the seriousness of the crimes.

“The damage caused often outweighs the property stolen, it can cost upwards of thousands to repair,” he said.

“A lot of these sites have locked up properly, have bars on the windows and alarm systems, so there’s only so much they can do.

“They’re doing everything right in terms of security.”

He said it was unclear if the burglaries were connected.

Anyone with information should call Wodonga Police on (02) 6024 0554, or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.