Location Of Theft in AQUA BLUE
URL Of Linked Article In STEEL BLUE or GREEN
Full Content Of Article In BLACK
Theft Description In Body Of Article in RED

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Computers stolen during break-in at county GOP HQ


Unknown suspects broke into the Montgomery County Republican headquarters over night Thursday, stealing nine laptop computers that could contain sensitive information, and scrawling "Vote Dem" on two walls.

The last volunteer left at about 8:15 p.m. Thursday and when people arrived at 8 a.m. Friday they found that someone had used a crowbar to open the back door and steal nine com puters, said Pat Wilson, chair woman of the Montgomery County Republican Executive Committee.
She said they hope the police can recover the lost computers.
Wilson said she was not aware of any other items that were stolen and that she honest ly feels "it was a break-in and they found the computers."
But, four days before the election, she said the break-in was suspicious. She said they have been at the location "for a couple of years with no prob­lem."
Wilson said there were rent ed computers that the party used for phone banks, comput ers that would not be there at other times of the year.
She said there could be some sensitive information on the computers.
The crime is being treated as a business burglary and there are no current suspects, accord ing to Lt. Mark Drinkard, a spokesman for the Montgomery Police Department.
Drinkard said that at 8:03 a.m. Friday, Montgomery police units responded to a call con cerning a burglary at Vaughn Plaza, which houses the Mont­gomery County Republican Par ty headquarters and other busi nesses.
The suspects made their en trance through the back door and stole an assortment of items including several Dell laptops, Drinkard said.
Philip Bryan, communica tions director for the Alabama Republican Party, said the party is not making any allegations.
"While break-ins certainly occur randomly, it is highly sus picious that in the heat of an election cycle and with just four days left to Election Day that laptops containing highly sensi tive information have been sto len," he said.
Bryan said they hope there will be a thorough investigation and "those responsible will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
Wilson said she was glad no one was in the office at the time of the break-in.
"We just feel a little violated about the whole thing. It is kind of frightening when you know someone comes in and we might have been in here," she said.
Wilson called the Montgomery Advertiser back to say that one of the volunteers went into the bathroom and found "Vote Dem" scratched into the wall alongside a hole that someone punched in the wall. She said the suspects did the same thing in the kitchen.
Wilson said they did not see it originally because the letters were "faint" and because of the lighting in the rooms.
Staff writer Matt Okarmus contributed to this report.

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