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Police investigating Havre store break-in

Havre police are investigating a burglary at a local music and video store that netted thieves several dozen compact discs and a large amount of change earmarked for charitable causes.

The burglars broke into Creative Leisure through a skylight late Monday or early Tuesday and made off with a collection of rock and jazz CDs as well as money from donation jars for the future skateboard park and the Havre Optimists Club, Havre police Lt. George Tate said Wednesday.

"Once inside, they stole a number of CDs," Tate said. "They took about eight different types of music - AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Offspring, Dave Matthews, the Ramones and some various blues CDs."

Creative Leisure co-owner Mike Hamilton said the stolen CDs numbered between 30 and 35.

"I think they were looking for cash, and when they didn't find any, they went shopping," he said.

Hamilton called police at 10:02 a.m. Tuesday when he discovered the drawer to the cash register had been thrown on the ground.

Only $16 in loose change was in the till, Tate said. In addition to taking that money, the burglars also stole about $20 for the Havre skate park from a coffee can and an unknown amount of money that had been collected in a plastic jug used by the Optimists Club for fund raising. The jug had been nearly full and the change had been placed in a large canvas bag for the Optimists Club to pick up. The thief stole the canvas bag, which Tate described as very heavy.

"Whoever did this will have bulging pockets," he said.

Hamilton estimated the value of the CDs and the stolen change to be about $500. He said the owners consider themselves fortunate that more damage was not done.

"We feel pretty lucky, actually," he said. "It could have been a lot worse. We're pleased that whoever did this weren't vandals."

People with information about the burglary can call Crimestoppers. Calls are not traced and callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward. The number for Crimestoppers is 265-4444.


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