Boreal building hit
Youth faces five counts of break and enter

Daniel MacIsaac
Northern News Services

NNSL (Oct 22/99) - An Inuvik youth who turned into a one-man wrecking crew was arrested less than 24 hours after breaking into five businesses at the Boreal Bookstore building last Thursday night.

Forcing his way into the building through the back door of the Northwest Water Co. around midnight, the 16-year-old proceeded to kick his way into the offices of the Delta Trading company, Shear Delight Salon, Lindsay Accounting and Boreal Books.

"All businesses suffered various degrees of damage and loss," the RCMP reported. "An employee of one of businesses surprised the culprit and scared him off."

Police were called to the scene immediately, when falling snow was already obscuring the youth's bootprints. Making an appearance the Friday morning, business owners surveyed the damage while Const. Darrell Robertson began searching for forensic evidence. Owners said close to $1,000 had been stolen and later estimates said the youth had caused upwards of $25,000 in damage.

Later that day, however, the youth was already in custody.

"As a result of information provided to the police and results obtained from an internal security system, the Inuvik detachment of the RCMP arrested the 16-year-old male on the afternoon of Oct. 15," police reported.

George Roach, owner of the building and of Delta Trading, said the break-ins would push back the planned opening of the retail store and would cause grief in terms of insurance and repairs.

"There's just this disgusted feeling when someone's been pawing through your stuff," he said, "and there's so much stuff here I wonder what he did take ... this guy was a one-man crime wave."

The youth is charged with five counts of break and enter as well as a breach of undertaking. He had previously been released from custody and was already awaiting sentencing on other criminal matters, said police.