Lexington police are searching for burglars who broke into home early Sunday stealing electronics and about $3,000 in cash and checks donated to the Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky.
Burglars appeared to have entered the Charwood Drive home of Regina Schmutte through a garage door overnight. Schmutte is the chairwoman of the association's 2009 charity Buddy Walk held at Keeneland on Oct. 3. The burglars took about $1,000 in cash and another $2,000 in checks donated Friday for the walk that had been tucked in a laptop case to be deposited Monday, said Traci Brewer, the association's chairwoman.
They also took electronics, including a 58-inch plasma TV, Schmutte's purse and two laptops, Brewer said.
The scariest part, Brewer said, was that Schmutte, her husband and their two children were home at the time, as was their dog, Ernie, who didn't bark.
A neighbor across the street also reported an attempted break-in overnight, signalling that the burglary at the Schmuttes' home was random, Brewer said.
Brewer said most donors whose checks were stolen had been contacted by Sunday night, and she hoped banks would be on the look-out for anyone trying to cash them.
On the bright side, Schmutte said that a neighbor who had never given to the charity before donated $50 after watching news reports about the break-in.
The 2009 Buddy Walk has so far raised $80,000 to be used for the organization's lending library, education and outreach efforts. For more information about the association, go to www.dsack.org.