Thieves steal tools meant to help teach children

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- Department of Wildlife officials take pride in teaching children all over the metro about nature, how to fish and to be good stewards of the environment.

They are extremely disappointed bandits stole tools that would help teach children. 

Wednesday just before 1 a.m., surveillance video shows two bandits storming into the Wildlife Department parking lot on Arcadia Lake, one on foot the other in the getaway car.

"One of the trailers was basically empty. We use it for our training program at churches and schools," Lance Meek said, Education Coordinator with the Department of Wildlife.

He said the other trailer was full of supplies for children.

"It's supposed to go to Oklahoma schools so the students will have the opportunity to fish as part of their classroom activities," Meek said. "Times are tight and money is tough to come by and these schools are really looking forward to getting this equipment and now I honestly don't know what we are going to do."

Meek said the gear would help almost 600 students. 

Stephen Smith understands the joy that comes with exploring nature.

He and his nephew come to Arcadia Lake a few times a week to fish, an opportunity he said all kids should have.

"It upsets me because it takes away from kids and them learning the right things to do in life," Smith said. 

Meek hopes to get the gear back. 

"Some of the best experiences I've ever had with my friends, family and parents were fishing and being on the water. I just want these kids to have the same enjoyment and memories. I hope we are able to figure something out," Meek said.

Anyone who may know the men seen in the video or know anything about the stolen goods is asked to call police.

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