In the past two weeks, three elementary schools in the North County have been targeted by burglars. Valuable computers and iPads have been stolen from classrooms and officials are trying to determine if the burglaries are connected. Meanwhile, parents and teachers are upset over the loss, which directly impacts young students. NBC 7 s Todd Strain reports.
Burglars stole two dozen laptops from an elementary school in Solana Beach Friday night, sheriff’s detectives confirmed.
The robbery happened at approximately 11:45 p.m. at Skyline Elementary School located at 606 Lomas Santa Fe Dr. The burglary alarm activated and deputies responded to the school.
When deputies arrived on campus, they discovered a computer lab classroom had been broken into and burglarized.
About two dozen Apple-brand laptops worth an estimated $36,000 had been stolen from the classroom, officials said.
Deputies did not immediately locate the school burglary suspects and are searching for leads.
The break-in at Skyline Elementary School marks the third school burglary of this kind to happen in the last two weeks.
On Dec. 29, a dozen iPads were stolen in a similar overnight burglary at Cardiff Elementary School. In that incident, the school’s alarms were activated, alerting deputies to the scene.
Burglary suspects had broken into two classrooms and broken a lock on a storage cabinet to steal the iPad tablets. Investigators said the loss was valued at $6,360.
In a separate case on Dec. 31, a dozen iPads were stolen from Ada Harris Elementary School in Cardiff.
On Saturday, an Encinitas sheriff’s detective told NBC 7 that the three school break-ins have all been similar in nature, but couldn’t confirm if they’re actually related.
The detective said each burglary has targeted an elementary school in the North County, and each break-in has occurred overnight, while the schools are closed.
In each incident, Apple-brand electronics seem to the target, specifically iPads and iMacs.
NBC 7 reached out to Solana Beach School District Superintendent Nancy Lynch about this string of school burglaries.
Lynch said the North County community, including school staff, students and parents, feel victimized. In the end, Lynch said it’s the students who lose the most.
“The students not only suffer by their school being broken into with theft of computers, their assignments and projects on those devices are lost as well,” said Lynch. “We are saddened by the impact on learning for children when this happens, since it is more than computers that is being taken from them. It is unfortunate that these individuals are motivated to steal from children.”