Attorneys at three Spokane law firms are beefing up office security after they were hit by a computer-swiping thief or thieves.
Since Christmas, law offices on the North Side and Sunset Hill have been burglarized.
In each case, the thief or thieves entered the building by breaking a back window, then stole computer equipment, the victims said.
Police are investigating, but no arrests have been made.
Detectives aren’t sure if the cases are related.
Since the thefts, the firms have installed tighter security, such as floodlights near doors and windows and better locks and alarms.
The offices of attorney Dana Madsen, at 1725 N. Ash, were hit twice: the first time on Christmas night, the second time the next morning. A burglar alarm summoned police both times.
In each theft, expensive computer equipment was the only thing stolen, said Kay Mattoon, the firm’s bookkeeper.
“We’re going to secure our computers to the floor,” Mattoon said Monday. “It’s getting expensive, and it’s very unnerving.”
Attorney Kent Mumma wasn’t as lucky. Someone broke into his offices at 1201 N. Ash either late Dec. 29 or early Dec. 30 and took virtually everything.
Mumma lost four complete computers, a laser printer, a desk lamp, even framed Ansel Adams photographs from the walls.
The thieves knew what they were after, Mumma said. “We think they crimped one cord, but they didn’t do any other damage,” he said.
Insurance will pay to replace the equipment. “What it doesn’t replace is the four years of work on those computers,” he said.
Someone broke into Jerome Leveque’s offices late Dec. 30 or early on Dec. 31 and made off with four state-of-the-art hard drives and one file server. The thief or thieves apparently planned to steal more because some equipment was stacked near a window, Leveque said.
But there also was blood near the window, suggesting someone cut themselves on the broken glass, he said. “That may be what stopped them from coming back.”