Thieves Christmas Shop At Playa La Mision
Rash of break-ins
By Lois Drake

Beginning in mid November, a rash of break-ins and thefts occurred at the otherwise tranquil Playa La Mision. Old timers have come to expect this type of yearly harassment, calling it “Christmas shopping”. Locals are especially embarrassed by an attack on an American charity group that was in town to distribute Christmas toys.

On November 17th, a homeowner reported a man lurking around, but the police never came. The La Mision representative (the delegado) said that the police did arrive but were denied entrance to the community by the drunken host of a party. While the police went to the wrong house, a nearby home was robbed of a laptop, a cell phone and other items. But, there was a clue. A Converse shoe print was found at the scene.

On November 23rd, tools and stereo equipment were stolen from a parked truck that had been left unlocked. For detective fans, again the thief left a Converse shoe print. The next evening, another nearby beach house was broken into. The intruder jimmied a sliding glass door and took computer games and ipods. There were three dogs enclosed in the house, but their barking did not deter the thief. Police showed up promptly this time, and again, the Converse shoe print was found.

A week later, the same house was entered again. This time the intruders took dog food, tools, and the remaining electronic equipment. The thieves also helped themselves to food; they made quesadillas, ate cereal, yogurt, ice cream, chips and frozen pizza. On December 1st, while everyone in the neighborhood was attending a local wedding, another house was broken into, and food and candlesticks were taken. The same house was entered again a week later.

On December 14, someone smashed the windshield of a minivan rented by the Airline Ambassadors charity, which had arrived in La Mision to distribute toys to area children and to the Miracle Ranch Orphanage. The night guard at the La Mision gate coordinated with the police, the van rental company, and the insurance adjustor. The police and adjustors handled the problem efficiently, but the insurance deductible was $800 USD. It was a steep price to pay for good hearted people who came to Baja to bring a more joyous Christmas to children. The group did say that in spite of the unfortunate event, they “love La Mision and the people and they’ll be back next year”. The owner of the Converse shoe was never found.

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