Crime

‘May God bless them’: Thieves strike again at Northland Salvation Army, taking camper

The Salvation Army is located at 5306 N. Oak St. Trafficway.
The Salvation Army is located at 5306 N. Oak St. Trafficway. Google Earth

To steal from the Salvation Army is to tempt some really bad karma.

In the past few months, thieves have cut a fuel line on a van and stripped copper wire from the lights at the Northland Salvation Army at 5306 N. Oak St. Trafficway.

But the latest caper was truly brazen.

Sometime between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning someone cut through a heavy lock and stole a 24-foot, 2004 Gulf Stream Ameri-lite camper trailer that was the personal property of Maj. James Mungai and his wife. Mungai is the senior pastor and administrator of the Salvation Army in Platte, Clay and Ray counties.

The Mungais moved to Kansas City from Hutchinson, Kan., about a year ago and were in the process of getting the trailer registered in Missouri. It was full of camping gear and other personal items. It has a queen-sized bed and a shower.

“It was a really nice RV camper,” Mungai said Wednesday.

Ameri-lite.jpg
Thieves stole a Gulf Stream Ameri-lite camper, similar to this one, from the parking lot of the Salvation Army at 5306 N. Oak Trafficway. It belongs to Maj. James Mungai and his wife. Paul Campbell Gulf Stream

Bill Keeney, community interaction officer with the Kansas City Police Department, confirmed the theft and said police have made a report.

“The Salvation Army, of all things,” Keeney said in exasperation. “It’s just horrible.”

Civic leader Anita Gorman, who learns of just about everything that goes on in the Northland, said she hasn’t been so angry since someone stole an Alberta spruce sapling that the park department planted by the Northland Fountain in memory of her late husband, Gerald.

Mungai chalked the camper theft up to part of the urban experience. He thinks maybe it’s time to install security cameras in the Salvation Army parking lot.

“We’re praying, actually, for the people who did it,” he said. “May God bless them, or may God do something for them. Because if they continue to steal they’re going to have to answer to a higher power.”

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