Thieves Ransack Salvation Army's Storage, Stealing Hundreds of Christmas Presents

"With us, all you have to do is ask. We'll give you what we can. That's where the frustration lies," said Thomas Gallahue of the Salvation Army.

The Grinch came early this year, and a California Salvation Army's Christmas donations suffered the consequences of his actions.

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Staff and volunteers were just arriving to the Salvation Army in Roseville Thursday morning when they discovered their back storage had been broken into.

"Somebody had taken the crowbar and ripped the lock out of the shed," said social service coordinator Thomas Gallahue, who walked into the heartbreaking display. "It was ransacked, and I could tell it had been gone through."

The shed had been storing clothes, toys, and supplies, to be distributed to families in need around Christmas.

While volunteers are still trying to assess the damages, Gallahue told that 250 brand new jackets, 120 filled backpacks, and several 50 gallon drums filled with toys were among the things stolen from the collection they began building around the end of summer.

"It becomes a little scary to know we can't do as much as we could have, had we had those items," Gallahue said, adding that the organization helps more than 400 families and 1,000 kids every year.

But, Gallahue said the organization isn't angry with the thieves — they are concerned for them.

"If they have that much of a need, we would have done whatever we could to help them out in any way we could have," Gallahue said. "With us, all you have to do is ask. We'll give you what we can. That's where the frustration lies."

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"Once in a while, we'll have a charity ripped off," said Dee Dee Gunther of the Roseville Police Department. "Unfortunately, it happens."

Cops still have not been able to track down the perpetrators, but Gunther said, "we're hoping through the publicity, we'll be able to catch them."

While the organization still has some supplies to hand out, Gallahue called the theft "a setback."

They are now continuing the accept donations, and hope they will be able to rebuild their collection by Christmas.

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