Thief steals sports equipment used by local kids

Posted at 6:43 PM, Aug 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-01 07:46:54-04

SAN DIEGO - A local watersports group is out thousands of dollars in equipment it kept for its child members after a theft earlier this week.

The Ikuna Koa Outrigger Canoe Club rents space at the San Diego Mission Bay Boat & Ski Club. It has about 50 members, many of them children. The group stores its equipment -- donated by its members -- in a shed on the edge of the property.

"It's a little gem in San Diego," said Pohai, one of its members.

She said the area makes her feel back at home in Hawaii, with open space and palm trees, and she added, "I finally found my peace here."

However, Pohai's peace is now shattered. Thieves broke into the group's windowless shed, prying open the latch that held the locks. They stole more than $4,000 worth of stand-up paddleboards, which are used by the club's kids.

"When you involve the keikis ... that's just too much," she said. "You don't go after the kids."

Pohai said the facility's surveillance cameras didn't reach the shed. She also said the thieves pulled out the wires in its overhead security lights. Individual members own the boards, according to Pohai, and each would be filing their own police reports.

"I hope for the community to just look out, give a little kokua, a little help, to see what happened, if anybody can let us know," she said.

That would help them get back to focusing on canoe competitions. Because after all, Ikuna Koa means victory and strength.