by: Greg Suskin Updated:
ROCK HILL, S.C. - A bulletin board at Comfort Systems is covered with thank-you letters from customers, and local charities the business has supported during its 50-year history.
All that was overshadowed Thursday by a damaged fence and a major theft.
"Well, it shut us down for about half a day this morning,” said Matthew Sy.
Sy runs the company and said his workers couldn't do their jobs, because everything was gone.
"We've been hit numerous times in the past where they've just taken copper, compressors, things like that, but last night they hit our employees tools,” he said.
So, for much of the day technicians couldn't install HVAC systems.
Kim Henson runs a drywall shop across the street. She saw police here earlier this week, after a copper theft. She said things have gotten worse since a break-in last year.
"We’ve been robbed. Most of the businesses down White Street have been broken into,” she said.
Channel 9 checked the police department's crime mapping website, and zeroed in on a section of town along East White Street. It shows 43 crimes reported since the beginning of the year. Most of them are break-ins and theft from businesses.
For Sy, a comment from his office manager Thursday morning made it worse.
"She’s usually the first to get here, and she told me today she's going to start coming in later, because she doesn't feel safe here anymore,” he said.
The owner had to go to a hardware store and buy tools so his installation crews could work.
Police are not talking about possible suspects.