Crime spree hits downtown Vashon in recent days

Mike Douvier, owner of Doug’s Auto Repair, said his shop has not been targeted by thieves in 35 years

Three island businesses experienced burglaries or attempted burglaries the night of May 2 or the morning of May 3, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office, and at least one car was broken into a few days later.

Two thieves broke into Doug’s Auto Repair between 7 p.m. Thursday, May 2, and 6:45 a.m. Friday, May 3; security cameras captured the images of the people, who stole a laptop computer, a mechanic’s work journal and tools, including air ratchets and an impact driver.

Owner Mike Douvier said employees called him early Friday morning with the news.

“They just scratched the surface of what they could have gotten,” he said.

Insurance will cover the full cost of the loss, Douvier said, adding that he would know the dollar value of the stolen tools better after speaking with a tool representative.

He said that he has been in business for 35 years and this was his first break in.

Now, he has a new security system in place, and he replaced the lock on the back door, where the burglars entered.

In the heart of town, SAW, Starving Artist Works, was also broken into that night, according to King County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Ryan Abbott. The lock on that door had been fully removed. The cash drawer was found on the floor and some money was taken, Abbott said, declining to state the amount, as well as 20 to 30 pieces of homemade jewelry.

Next door at the office of VARSA (the Vashon Alliance to Reduce Substance Abuse), an employee on Friday morning noticed that there had been an attempted break in, with pry marks near the front door. No one had gained entry into that business, but it was the investigation that revealed the SAW break in, Abbott said.

Meanwhile, islander Christian Hasson reported that his car had been broken into on Sunday, May 5, in the parking lot behind the pharmacy in the early afternoon. He shared the news on Facebook, saying that the antenna had been broken off his car and used to open the car door. The thieves stole many valuable possessions, he said, including a large dufflebag/backpack. The thieves then used his credit card at Luna Bella’s. Meanwhile, Luna Bella’s owner Diana Anderson said that one of her employees called her on Sunday, reporting that she had a shoplifter.

At the time, another woman was in the store, and her husband waiting outside photographed two people who had left the store, including the woman identified as the shoplifter. Hasson obtained those photos, along with security camera shots from the Vashon Pharmacy, and began circulating the images on social media. On Tuesday morning, he said the people in the photos had been identified and that he was optimistic that the people were still on the island and would be caught. He added, however, that his primary concern is that this kind of crime would happen on Vashon in the middle of the day. He grew up on the island, he said, and as a teen used to leave his keys in his car with the windows down. But now, he hopes that islanders will have more awareness and protect their property.

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