About $100,000.00 worth of equipment has been stolen from the South Carolina Forestry Commission’s headquarters. Between December 23 and the morning of December 27, someone cut through a locked gate in a non-public area of the agency’s state headquarters in Columbia.
Scott Hawkins of the Forestry Commission says stolen items ranged from a Ford F350 diesel flatbed truck and some ATV’s to high-tech laptops for fire-fighting missions:
This is a crime not just against our agency, but against the citizens of South Carolina. We’ve built up our Incident Management Team over time and acquired much of the gear with one-time-only Homeland Security grants.
Hawkins says that someone involved knew the equipment was stored there, since the facility was not open to the public.
Some of the gear stolen is used in law enforcement, says Hawkins. And now state and local law enforcement is “hot on the trail” in its investigation.
Forestry officials are still trying to determine what is insured and what is irreplaceable. The list includes 13 Dell Laptops, three Gen Pro Generators Model 125 EH, one Buffalo Terrastation Pro II (a computer network storage unit), one Millermatic Welder with spoolgun, one Honda EU3000IS Generator, 1997 Ford white F-350 flatbed truck (tag SG 72350), 2006 Yamaha Big Bear 400 4-wheeler, one Black and Decker 10” chop saw, a 6×12 trailer, 2006 Polaris Ranger Utility Vehicle, assorted binders, tie down straps, hand tools and power tools.
Hawkins says anyone with information should call 1- 800-777-FIRE.