Theft of donations infuriates residents

By KARL SCHWEIZER

Herald Writer

MILL CREEK – Police are determined to track down the thief who stole from a donation jar that had been set up to help an injured Mill Creek police officer.

Officer Mark Bond lost the lower part of his left leg June 24 when he crashed during a charity motorcycle ride in British Columbia. He was raising money for the Northwest Burn Center.

On Wednesday, someone helped himself to a donation jar set up for Bond at a Union 76 gas station at the corner of 164th Street SE and the Bothell-Everett Highway. The jar had just been emptied, so the thief got only about $12, but the theft still angered Mill Creek residents.

"Just give me five minutes alone with that guy (the thief)," said Joe Wenzel, the clerk on duty at the station Saturday. "It’s bad enough that he (Bond) lost his leg."

Wenzel, who was not working Wednesday, said police were trying to lift fingerprints from some lottery tickets the suspected thief left behind.

The theft hasn’t stopped Bond’s supporters from raising money for his medical expenses, not all of which are covered by his medical insurance. About a dozen off-duty police, city employees and other volunteers held a car wash Saturday at the same gas station where the theft occurred, raising more than $1,000 for Bond, said Police Chief Noreen Skagen. Police volunteers organized the wash, Skagen said.

"It was very nice. Businesspeople came by and brought us pizzas," she said.

Mill Creek Mayor Terry Ryan, who stopped by to get his car washed, encouraged people to help Bond, a 10-year veteran of the police department.

"This is our chance as a community to take care of our own," Ryan said.

Donations for Mark Bond can be made at any Washington Mutual branch.

You can call Herald Writer Karl Schweizer at 425-339-3452or send e-mail to

schweizer@heraldnet.com.

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