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Two laptops and about $600 in cash were stolen sometime between June 9 and June 10 at the UpValley Family Centers on Spring Street in St. Helena.

Executive Director Jenny Ocon said when two staffers arrived at the office, on the property of the St. Helena Presbyterian Church, on June 10 they “discovered the back door was slightly ajar and things were out of place. The curtains were drawn and then we realized we got broken into.”

They did an assessment and discovered two laptops, worth about $700 each, were missing and $500 from their cashbox also was stolen. “We have a bill pay service, people come in and pay their bills, that’s why we manage cash,” Ocon said last Thursday. There was also an envelope with cash in it in one of the desks that was stolen.

Ocon said there was no sensitive information on the laptops, since the UpValley Family Centers’ client database is kept on a server.

After the police arrived, they collected some physical evidence, took a report and will determine if the fingerprints taken from the physical evidence is a match to lead them to a suspect. There are no suspects currently. The police have the serial numbers of the laptops.

There was no damage to the property, Ocon said, and no one was hurt. “The truth of it is that it could have been a lot worse,” Ocon said. She added they will have to replace the laptops, because employees need them to do their work.

It is strange for the UpValley Family Centers to be targeted, the executive director said, “because we are here to serve the community. It feels especially unfortunate that we were targeted because the money and resources we have here are to serve people in need in the community.”

Donations are welcome to help replace what was stolen. Take or mail checks to the center at 1440 Spring St. in St. Helena or go to UpValleyFamilyCenters.org.

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St. Helena Star Editor

David Stoneberg is the editor of the St. Helena Star, an award-winning weekly newspaper. Prior to joining the Star in 2006, he worked for the Lake County Record-Bee, the Clear Lake Observer American, the Middletown Times Star, The Weekly Calistogan and st

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