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The Press Enterprise (Riverside, CA)
Pony United Youth Baseball League's players hadn't even started their season when they suffered a terrible loss: Someone broke into their storage bin at John F. Kennedy Park in Pomona and stole five bags of catcher's equipment, gloves, bats and helmets.
The players, ages 4-13, who recently had been fitted for their jerseys and had wrapped up their skills clinics, now will have to practice without the gear. Leaf blowers and tools used to maintain the fields also were taken.
League president Carlos Goytia pegged the value of the loss at $3,000.
"This is truly devastating! Who does this?" Goytia wrote in a Facebook post. "The only victims here (are) the children who are looking forward to playing ball this season! We are determined to do whatever is needed in turning this travesty into a triumph for our youth here at Pony United!"
The burglary was reported Saturday afternoon and is believed to have occurred between Thursday and Saturday, Pomona police said in a news release. Detectives are trying to identify those responsible.
The league has created a GoFundMe page under the title Pony United Youth Baseball League to raise money to replace the stolen equipment.
"It is with a humble heart that we ask you for your help and support in our efforts to build on a program that is very much needed in this area of Pomona," Goytia said.
This was going to be a special season in which some games would be played on fields where lights had been installed a month ago.
Police ask anyone who might help identify the thieves or locate the stolen property to call 909-620-2085 or leave tips anonymously at 800-222-8477.
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