Teens Steal Bikes From Non-Profit Dedicated to People With Developmental Disabilities

"It robs them a little bit of their independence," said Julie Larsen, executive director of Better Community Resources.

Clients and staff at a non-profit organization that serves people with developmental disabilities are reeling after three adult tricycles were stolen from the facility in Burbank late last month.

The tricycles had been donated to Better Community Resources just six weeks prior, after the organization's clients held a fundraiser to get them, according to Julie Larsen, BCR's executive director.

In a surveillance video of the theft, three teenage boys arrive to the area on bikes and peer into the gated area where the tricycles were being held. About ten minutes later, they return on foot with bolt cutters, cut the gate and ride off on the bikes.

"They rode up on bikes, they had their own bikes," Larsen said. "You often wonder who their parents are."

BCR's clients liked to ride the tricycles around the park and Larsen said the nonprofit was about to have them start riding to the grocery store a block away to shop for their cooking classes.

When clients learned that the bikes were stolen, some of the them were moved to tears.

"It robs them a little bit of their independence," Larsen said.

A group of Good Samaritans recently donated $1,000 to the facility so they can replace the stolen bikes and purchase a fourth one, according to Larsen.

"This out-pouring of goodwill amongst strangers is a fantastic, teachable moment for all of us here at BCR," she said. 

BCR has filed a report on the theft with the Burbank Police Department. Authorities are investigating to identify the three thieves.

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