A Tampa Bay Little League is picking up the pieces after someone stole equipment and almost $1,000.
Playing ball is a pastime and a bonding experience for many families. But someone recently tried to take that away from Northwest Little League.
"They had kicked this whole thing out," Paco Gomez, president of the league, said as he showed where the break-in happened.
After collecting registration fees on Wednesday night, someone broke into the concession stand.
"They destroyed the concession stand," Gomez said. "They couldn't open the register, so they slammed it into the ground. They threw it everywhere."
The thief or thieves got away with equipment and $800.
"You're stealing probably some of the things those kids only have," said Dana Burkett, a coach in the league.
It was heartbreaking news for many of the players when they were told. The money was supposed to be used for uniforms.
"I was devastated (and) mad," said Joshua Candales, 12, who plays in the league. "I went home mad."
Jaser Candales, the league's vice president and a parent, added: "I knew what it was going to cost our kids. The pain for us to recoup that to get the kids what they need."
The Northwest Little League is hoping that with the community's help, it can rebuild so they can play the upcoming spring season.
"Well, you got to teach the kids we got knocked down, and now we have to fight to get back up," Jaser Candales said.
The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is investigating the burglary. Deputies said there currently are no suspects.
The Northwest Little League has started a GoFundMe page.
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