A local Boy Scout troop recently learned a hard lesson of life -- sometimes people don't respect other people's property.
Now, Crime Stoppers of Lawrence and Douglas County is hoping the public can help the Scouts get their property back.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest of the person or people who stole two 18-foot aluminum canoes and eight paddles that belonged to Boy Scout Troop 55, which is sponsored by West Side Presbyterian Church. The property, which was valued on a sheriff's report at $1,926, was stolen between Oct. 1 and Oct. 7 from Camp Bromelsick, the Boy Scout camp north of Clinton Lake.
People with information about the crime can call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 843-TIPS (8477).
Lawrence Police Lt. Dan Affalter, adult leader for the troop, said troop members used the canoes at districtwide events to teach water safety to other Scouts. He said the troop had used the canoes the weekend of Oct. 1 at a district event and then left them at the camp because another camp-out was scheduled for the next weekend.
When troop members arrived for that event, they found that the year-old canoes and paddles were gone and that another, older canoe had been damaged. Four other older canoes and some older paddles were left untouched.
Affalter said the 50 troop members earned money to buy the canoes through car washes, parking cars at American Legion events and other service projects.
"They're disappointed," Affalter said of the Scouts. "We'll have to replace them by next summer or we won't be able to have those kinds of events or we will have to limit participation."