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'Daring' thief cut hole in wall

Andrew Raven
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Dec 10/04) - Police are searching for suspects following three break-ins at government buildings, including a heist where thieves cut a hole in an office wall and stole an undisclosed amount of cash. Investigators believe the burglaries -- which came during a rash of break and enters into downtown business -- may be related.

"Identification units were called in and similar evidence was found at all three (crime) scenes," said RCMP Const. Kerri Riehl, who declines to comment specifically on what investigators found.

The first and most daring robbery, according to Riehl, happened in the early afternoon hours of Nov. 21. A thief or thieves cut a hand-sized hole in an office wall of a territorial government building, reached into the room and unlocked the door, eventually walking away with an undisclosed amount of cash. "It was not the type of crime we see very often," said Riehl. "It was daring."

Two other territorial government offices were raided on Nov. 28 and Dec. 2, said Riehl. In both cases, a safe was pried open and cash was stolen.

There was no evidence of forced entry into the offices and Riehl said there was a "possibility" that employees may be involved in the theft.

The thieves appeared to be in search of cash, Riehl said.

Investigators have identified possible suspects, but no charges have been laid, Riehl said. She asked anyone with information to contact police.

During November, police received reports of 42 break-ins, including 29 between Nov. 15-28. Of the break-ins, 22 were at businesses and 21 at residences.