Thieves take tools from Dubuque Habitat for Humanity home - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Thieves take tools from Dubuque Habitat for Humanity home

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A local organization is scrambling to find tools to complete a project on time.

The Dubuque and Jackson County Habitat for Humanity had more than $3,000 worth of power tools stolen from a construction site on Washington Street sometime between July 12 and July 16.

"I opened the trailer and everything looked normal. I opened the lock and opened the door, walked in and thought, 'There is an awful lot of room in this trailer,'" said volunteer Jerry Fudge.

The organization had been working on a house located on Washington Street in Dubuque for a long time, according to Eric Veltstra, executive director of the Dubuque and Jackson County Habitat for Humanity.

"This is one of the houses in the Bee Branch Project that was moved a couple of years ago to this new location," Veltstra said Friday. "We are doing a rehab of it."

Veltstra said this is the largest theft the organization has faced in nearly two decades.

"I was pretty upset knowing that they would steal from a charitable organization," said Fudge. "We work hard to raise money to do this and some people to come and steal all of our tools ... It really put me in a low spot."

The Dubuque and Jackson County Habitat for Humanity organization does have insurance, but Veltstra said the deductible for the insurance claim is too high.

"In order to keep it affordable we have to carry a high deductible, and that wouldn't cover any of the tools in this case," Veltstra said.

Since the theft, the organization said they have had dozens of individuals and businesses offer to donate the organization tools in order to complete their project by this fall.

"It makes me know that there are honest people out there," Fudge said.

Veltstra said he is optimistic that, with the help of donations, the project will continue as planned and be completed by this fall.

If you have an information about these stolen tools, Veltstra asks you contact the Dubuque Police Department.

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