WESTLOCK — Two suspects were caught breaking into the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 97 in Westlock last month, in the early morning hours of Jan. 13.
RCMP were called to the Legion about 2:30 a.m. by Legion president Dave Hall who is a retired RCMP officer, after he was notified of a possible break-in and went to the Legion to investigate.
“We got there about 2:25 a.m. and went in and started turning on the lights and I heard a door slam,” said Hall, noting he was able to apprehend the suspect in the alley just outside the back door and held him until police arrived.
A search of the building located another male suspect hiding in a closet and he was also arrested.
It was not the first time that month that the Legion was broken into. A week before that, on Jan. 6, the Legion was victim of a prior incident.
“Our storage shed was broken into and we figured out that there were two (20 pound) propane bottles stolen,” explained Hall, adding that’s all that was taken at that time.
In the Jan. 13 break-in, Hall said that two bags of frozen food and a can of WD40 were found by the legion door and noted “they weren’t looking to stay warm, they were looking to steal stuff.”
In addition, there was damage to one of the legion doors.
“They forced open one of our back doors so we had to repair that,” he said, noting it has also been reinforced.
A 20-year-old man and a 45-year-old man, both residents of Westlock, were charged with break and enter, possession of break-in instruments and mischief under $5,000.
Both accused will appear in Westlock Alberta Court of Justice on Feb. 29.