Disturbing trend: Bay Area firefighters up against flames, thieves

Matt Bigler
August 26, 2020 - 3:25 pm
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It’s happened again.

More firefighters have been victimized while battling the wildfires in the Bay Area. This time it was several smash-and-grab vehicle burglaries in the North Bay.

Sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning, three vehicles were burglarized in the parking lot of the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in San Rafael, where a large number of fire evacuees and firefighters battling the LNU Lightning Complex fires have been staying.

"The three vehicles belonged to seasonal firefighters who were in the area," San Rafael Police Lt. Dan Fink said.

At least one of the victims was a Bureau of Land Management firefighter from Montana.

Fink called the crimes "sad and deplorable."

It’s thought they could be the work of burglary crews trying to take advantage of the crisis. No suspects have been identified. "An event like this draws them to our area because they know that there’s people that are going to be more vulnerable," Lt. Fink told KCBS Radio.

Earlier this week, a fire commander on the CZU Lightning Complex fire had his wallet stolen out of his vehicle and his bank account completely drained of funds.

Santa Cruz County Deputies are seeking a suspect in that case.

"As much as they can take out of their car into wherever they’re staying or a hotel or whatever, please do."

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