“Jingle Bells” plays softly from an electronic music box and Christmas decorations hang everywhere, but just feet from a miniature Santa is a door with broken glass. Evidence of a crime one week before Christmas, that shattered holiday spirits at HollyDell Twenty-One Plus in Pennsville, N.J.
HollyDell provides services to young adults with severe disabilities, including cerebral palsy.
Between 5:30 Wednesday night and 6:30 Thursday morning, thieves forced open a back window and entered the building belonging to the non-profit organization, police in this Salem County community said.
“It just broke my heart,” said Lyn Zanow, HollyDell’s program supervisor, during an interview with NBC 10 News.
The burglars ransacked the place and even tore into holiday gifts. But cash was the big take.
The thieves took about $3,000 from a locked cabinet that they pried open, Zanow and police said. The program had raised that money for trips to attractions throughout the region.
“It’s not like we have a lot of cash, so everything we do have is very precious to us because we work on a shoe-string,” said Zanow.
The program had to shut down Thursday so detectives could investigate the break-in. Police said they were following some leads, but had not made any arrests.
Maintenance worker Michael Mullins discovered the burglary Thursday morning.
“It’s sad at this time of the year, with these kind of kids. I mean, they need so much as it is…you don’t want to take any more away from them,” he said.
You can help HollyDell T.O.P. by sending donations to the following address or by emailing Lyn Zanow by clicking here.
328B N Broadway
Pennsville, N.J. 08070