Special needs nonprofit robbed Saturday, thieves take everything

LAKEWOOD, Wash. – An organization dedicated to families touched by autism in our community was robbed early Saturday morning. Computers, tablets even office supplies, taken by thieves said Exceptional Families Network Executive Director, Angela Fish.

It adds up to thousands, she said, asking the community to help them catch the crooks.

“These drawers were all emptied,” said Fish, describing the damage in each room. “They were full to the top,” she said.

Their small office in Lakewood services hundreds of families with special needs children.

“This a box of our branded pens that has our information on it. This whole box is gone,” she said.

Between midnight and 9 am Saturday, Fish said their nonprofit was cleaned out.

“There was some electronics and software in here, that’s gone,” said Fish.

She said police believe they used crowbars to enter the outside door, then going upstairs and kicking in the second door to access the office.

“Why they didn’t hit the medical facility downstairs I’ll never know, but I am happy it was not them too,” she said.

Once inside they stole five computers, eight tablets, donation boxes, auction items, branded gifts and even the organization’s bank supplies.

“They took my deposit stamps, so they have all my bank account information and they have all of my information for our website because it’s all on the computer that they stole.”

It’s a tough loss for Exceptional Families Network and devastating for the community, she said.

“It makes me sad for the families it’s going to impact,” said Fish. “We work with hundreds of families in the area that have autism or special needs. Those families are not going to be able to access services or support from us while we try to figure out what we do next.”

She said the organization will move forward, through the break-in and will come out on top. “Being a special needs parent you cannot focus on the negative because that’s not going to get you anywhere. This is kind of a little bump in the road. But we’re going to get past it.”

Anyone with information on the break-in is urged to contact Lakewood Police department.

Fish said Exceptional Families Network is accepting any and all donations. Contact the organization directly for more information on how you can help