The Medicine River Wildlife Centre was broken into Sunday morning, according to executive director Carol Kelly. Contributed photo

Robbery at Medicine River Wildlife Centre

Depressing, frustrating and violating.

Those were some of the words Medicine River Wildlife Centre executive director Carol Kelly used after the registered charity was broken into and robbed over the weekend.

Kelly said she got a call from the RCMP on Sunday, saying they found what was believed to be Medicine River Wildlife Centre property at the scene of another break and enter. She then drove to the animal hospital, located near Spruce View.

“It was a day after the snow storm. I went down and sure enough the safe was missing, which is what they found at another scene,” she said.

“Over the next couple of days we … started making a list of all the things that were missing.”

A new $1.2-million animal hospital is currently under construction on the same property as the old facility. Kelly said there were plans to get a new security system installed before the robbery.

“They cut the bolt on the front of the old facility and took everything, from the car keys to the safe.

“Then they went around into the new building and scooped tools they could lift – all the drills, the little generator, the (saw).”

With vehicle keys stolen “we had to think of creative ways to disable the vehicles, so if they did come back to steal the vehicles, they wouldn’t be able to take them,” said Kelly.

The stolen items cost more than $10,000, which is only being partially covered through insurance.

READ MORE: New Medicine River animal hospital should be ready by the fall, says director

After posting about the robbery on Facebook, Kelly said there have been donations she believes will cover the cost of the stolen items.

“At first when you walk in after a snow storm and find out someone stole all the stuff from a charity, you kind of lose your faith in people. But the number of people supporting us so far outweigh the bad guys.”

With drills and other tools being stolen, Kelly said she initially thought the construction would be impacted. But people in the community reached out and offered their tools to the work crew.

“The impact on the construction is going to be much less than we first thought because of the speediness of how people supported us.

“In the long run we’re feeling positive because the whole community has backed us.”

The new Medicine River animal hospital is expected to be ready by the fall.

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