Replace broken

Businesses in East and West Hants frustrated and angry after weekend burglaries

RCMP are investigating a series of burglaries over Easter weekend at businesses in East and West Hants.

sergeant. Nova Scotia RCMP Public Information Officer Andrew Joyce confirmed that they are investigating “numerous” break and enters. He said the number was over three.

The owners of the Hill Top Hops brewery near Brooklyn, Nova Scotia, said there was a burglary on Friday night and the thieves returned on Saturday night and left a “huge mess” in their wake.

Adrienne Peters, who runs the business with her husband, said thieves targeted the brewery early on Friday, stole a few items and caused damage. They woke up on Easter Sunday to find it had happened again – and the thieves had doubled down.

“This time they took everything they could,” Peters said. She said intruders stole items like a large television and small brewing equipment and caused far more damage than the first incident.

“I think the worst part is when someone makes you feel unsafe like that,” she said.

Since the incidents, many people have contacted Peters to share similar experiences.

“People in our community are really, really scared and it’s just a really uncomfortable feeling.”

At the nearby Tidal Bore Farm Market, co-owner Sherry Nielsen said she learned of a burglary early Saturday.

She said little was taken from her business other than a laptop, soft drinks and chocolate bars.

Neilsen said the main problem was a broken front door that she estimates will cost over $2,000 to replace. She threw away products for fear that they were contaminated with glass fragments.

‘It’s horrible’

Neilsen said it had been a traumatic experience.

“It’s awful. It just makes you… feel so overwhelmed,” she said. “We are a small community, so something like this feels like a breach of our security.”

She said she was sad and a little angry on Saturday. But she said she was furious on Sunday that people were doing so much damage for almost no valuables.

She said it’s especially frustrating because businesses that have gone through tough times during the pandemic are now having to deal with costly repairs.

Burglar vehicles

Not too far down Highway 1, Serenity Acres Family Ranch was also the victim of thieves early Saturday.

In a Facebook post, the ranch owner said his home and vehicles were broken into.

Owner Kristy Falconer said the ranch works with veterans and first responders with post-traumatic stress disorder.

She said a veteran with PTSD was staying in a respite trailer and his vehicle was broken into. He had a wetsuit and other equipment stolen.

Falconer said the veteran used surfing as a way to cope. She said he teaches surfing, so the theft affects his livelihood.

She said she heard noise in the house, but thought it was because of her two sons raiding the fridge.

According to Falconer, the thieves took away a battery, an emergency medical kit, road equipment and wilderness supplies.

She said she had always felt safe in the past and usually left her house and car unlocked.