ARTESIA — At 11:45 p.m. Thursday, officers from the Artesia Police Department responded to 1103 Memorial Drive in reference to a burglar alarm. Upon arriving, police officers found the building had been unlawfully entered by unauthorized persons, and items had been taken.
The scene of the burglary houses Esperanza House Inc., which provides a confidential, non-threatening facility to interview child victims of abuse as well as witnesses to violent acts and child victims of domestic violence. … For the rest of the story, subscribe in print and on the web.
Trained investigators collected physical and testimonial evidence from the area. Electronic equipment and office supplies were taken; however, no forensic evidence was compromised during the incident.
“We run our operation in Artesia with one full-time staff member to keep expenses down and are deeply discouraged that someone chose to break in, steal equipment, and vandalize our building for the second time in two years,” said Sara Burnside, director of operations for Esperanza House. “The work we do is always victim-centered, and it is hard enough without having local thieves make things that much more difficult. I would like to stress that, as far as we can tell at this time, there are no missing victim files or information.
“We have fought hard in this economic climate not only to remain in Artesia doing what we do for our victims but also to avoid cutting any services. Replacing the items that were stolen will be difficult on a budget that is already stretched thin due to cuts in funding in the last two years, but we are committed to doing what’s necessary to provide the highest standard of service to our victims.”
The staff of Esperanza House provides direct services to victims by conducting forensic interviews that are an invaluable tool to both law enforcement investigators and social service agencies. The mission of the SANE/SART Project is to meet the needs of the sexual assault victim by providing an immediate, compassionate, sensitive, comprehensive forensic evaluation and treatment by a trained, professional nurse expert.