KILLEEN, Texas — It hasn’t been an easy road to opening the doors at the Impossible Teen Center in Killeen. After a grand opening earlier this year things were looking up, but now there has been another setback.
After weeks of rain Vantonio Fraley, owner of the Impossible Teen Center, decided it was time to cut his grass. He came to the center early Sunday morning and dropped off his equipment, but within a few hours, it was stolen.
“We're a free program and we're trying to do things for our community and take from us it's kinda it's a little disheartening. I went home to take a shower and everything. I looked at my camera and it was gone. It just happened so fast," Fraley said.
Fraley’s trailer and zero-turn lawn mower were stolen from right under his nose.
Fraley said, “For them to just come up so naturally. I can tell they've been in the hotel by re-watching the video."
Security cameras captured the whole incident. Fraley believes this was a team effort. The cameras caught the driver pulling away with almost $10,000 worth of equipment, what Fraley believes to be a look out, following behind.
“We have a big old sign that says Teen Center. Whether you know our story you gotta know something about the building," Fraley said.
A ladder was also stolen from the property in January.
“Not that we don’t expect it but we don’t want to cause a stereotype or judgment because it hasn’t been that so far," Fraley said.
“I was shocked and a little bit surprised for someone to do something like that, it hurts a little bit,” said Hector Vazquez.
Vazquez who works directly with teens says although this is upsetting, it’s a teachable moment.
Vazquez said, “You know that’s why this needs to be here because we know it’s a lot of negatives and you have to be negative or positive.”
Fraley is staying true to his mission of positivity and being great on purpose.
“As a place that uplifts, we don’t want to put somebody at risk of catching a felony but then again, we want to hold people accountable because that’s what we preach here,” he said.
Fraley hopes whoever stole his equipment will return it so he won't have to follow through with felony charges.
Fraley said this incident has highlighted the need for a shed so equipment can be locked up without being stolen. Eventually, he hopes to get a fence at the facility.
Luckily, within minutes of this original story airing on 25 News at 5, Fraley said someone from the community donated a lawnmower.