Written by AARON CASTREJON
DUARTE - A burglary was discovered early Saturday morning at Duarte High School, a fast pitch softball team’s equipment taken and no suspects identified.
A coach arrived to Duarte High School, 1565 Central Ave., around 7 a.m. May 13 to prep the field and discovered a broken door behind home plate. Further detective work revealed a busted lock on a shed and equipment taken from the 16U Lady Colt .45s, according to Coach Phillip Peinado.
“All softball gear is gone for the girls,” Peinado told SGV CityWatch. “They stole both pitching machines we have. Those are about $2,500 a piece. There were nine girls who left their equipment in the shed, gloves, bats, helmets, pitching masks, catching gear, their cleats. Everything.”
Peinado estimates the loss is $1,700 per player. Boxes of brand new CIF softballs and a speaker used to announce players and play music was also taken.
Whoever committed the burglary made use of an existing hole in a chain link fence near the first base dugout and widened it in order to take the equipment, Peinado believes.
Two buckets filled with Duarte High School equipment, including jerseys, were left behind on the way through the torn chain link fence, Peinado told SGV CityWatch.
Possibly more than two burglars may have been involved, Peinado believes, because the two stolen pitching machines are considerably heavy to move.
There is currently no suspect, or surveillance video available, according to Sgt. Blalock of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Temple Station.
Monday may shed some light once Duarte High School’s athletic director reviews the recordings. There is one camera near the football equipment shed that may have captured the burglary, or the escape, since a burglary attempt was made to take football gear, Peinado told SGV CityWatch.
“The .45 girls play for Duarte High School. Everything that I bring, I leave for the high school. In the five years that I’ve been there I’ve never had an incident,” Peinado said.
Most of the stolen equipment was personalized with Peinado’s logo, except for player bats, Peinado said. He contacted Play It Again Sports, which sells used sporting equipment, to be aware of anyone attempting to sell the stolen items.
Play It Again has a store in Pasadena, Fullerton and Los Alamitos.
For now, a few sponsors have reached out to help financially. Helmets, gloves and cleats are most needed, Peinado said.
a gofundme has been launched.
Anyone who would like to help the Lady Colt .45s can direct message Peinado through his Instagram: ladycolt45_peinado07.
Anyone with information on this burglary is urged to call the Sheriff’s Temple Station at 626-285-7171.