Terry Gregson had plans for a Boxing Day blowout, a week-long sale with deals for budding musicians to virtuosos.
Hours before the store was set to open, however, a couple of thieves had plans of their own.
At 3:30 a.m. Dec. 26, a white pickup truck rammed through G&G Music’s front door, crashing through reinforced steel bars into guitars, mandolins, shelves of music books and toppling a tower of stage lights.
It took minutes for the hoodie-clad men to make off with a load of guitars.
On New Year’s Eve, Gregson was still trying to figure out how many were stolen.
He estimates the theft and damage to be more than $50,000.
“They know you are setting up for Boxing Day and have all the stuff out.”
The independent music store on Lougheed Highway has been based in Maple Ridge for 22 years and has been hit by thieves in the past.
“This is the worst,” said Gregson.
“It was a mess this high.” He pointed to his knees.
The thieves managed to break in despite the added security Gregson installed after previous attempts.
“It’s boarded up like Fort Knox,” he said, explaining it takes staff 15 minutes to lock up every night, shut the windows and front door with bars, chains and padlocks. Security cameras captured the theft, but the men had covered their faces.
Police determined the pickup truck used by the thieves was stolen. It was found abandoned a day later with Yamaha stickers in the cab.
Before they rammed into G&G Music, the thieves hit a liquor store in Pitt Meadows.
Gregson jokes they were probably planning a party.
“We were robbed by creative alcoholics.”
• Ridge Meadows RCMP are asking anyone with information to call investigators at 604-463-6251 or leave an anonymous tip by calling CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).