Family’s supply of ice fishing gear stolen
It was a disappointing start to what looked like a promising weekend of ice fishing for Jason Arnold and his family.
Arnold awoke on Friday morning to discover thieves had taken all of the family’s ice fishing equipment from the driveway of their Diamond Vale home.
“It’s a total pain for us now,” Arnold said, estimating that the equipment added up to about $1,500. “The tent was the most expensive thing at 400 bucks, and the sleigh was two [hundred], and then there was all the gear.”
All that remained of the ice fishing gear was a couple of tent straps that had ripped off, some bait, a roll of toilet paper and the bungee cords that held the gear together. It was the bungee cords strewn on the driveway that tipped Arnold off to the theft.
“The bungee cords that we had strapped over for the tent to stay on were off, and everything was gone,” he said.
“That’s how I noticed, because I wouldn’t even have looked over, but I saw the cords. That’s all that was left.”
Arnold said he normally kept the gear inside the garage, but left it out Thursday night because he was storing a truck he was working on in the garage that night. He covered the pile with a drop sheet and left it on the driveway between the garage and his truck, which he had parked close on the driveway.
Arnold filed a report with the RCMP and contacted the Conservation Officer Service, hoping officers could help identify the stolen gear if the thieves decided to use it.
“Hopefully they find something out on the lakes, because they patrol them quite frequently,” Arnold said. “I just want [the thieves] caught.”
Arnold said he would be able to identify his gear based on the ripped tent straps and the way he put the sled together.
Users of the Facebook page “Merritt Buy and Swap” have offered to lend the family ice fishing gear for the weekend, but Arnold said his four kids have found the loss of heir own property the hardest to take. Their rods were Christmas gifts.
“Just give me some fishing line and I’m good to go, but the kids were pretty upset,” he said. “It’s their fishing rods that they care about, which are not expensive, but were theirs.”
It’s the third time Arnold has had a theft at his house on Cranna Crescent, and he said it’s taking a toll.
“We’ve had some issues here. It’s a little bit frustrating,” he said. “Years ago, I had my trailer in the back with my Bobcat on the back, and someone pulled in and just drove it away.”
Arnold also caught a woman breaking into his truck earlier this winter.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Merritt Detachment at 250-378-4262 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).