When Amy Mills and Grazyna Musick first learned of the robbery at Emancipet in downtown Killeen, their first thoughts weren’t of what was taken, but rather what they needed to accomplish to make sure the clinic opened on time Tuesday morning.
Mills, CEO of Emancipet, and Musick, the location manager, worked diligently Monday to clean up the mess left behind after an unknown number of assailants smashed out the back window of the clinic on West Avenue B either Saturday or Sunday night, pillaging an estimated $30,000 worth of equipment and medicine.
The low-cost animal care center lost several laptop computers, walkie-talkies, and microchips used to locate lost pets.
“This is almost catastrophic,” Mills said. “We are a nonprofit organization so we already depend on the good will of the community. For something like this to happen is terrible, but this will only slow us down — it won’t stop us.”
Musick arrived Monday afternoon and spent the next eight to nine hours cleaning up the mess.
She and Mills coordinated with other Emancipet locations as far away as Austin to re-supply the clinic so it can continue with its mission.
“They wiped out our cupboards, our medicines and anesthetics. They even took the microwave we use to heat bags of rice that act as warmers for baby kittens,” Musick said. “We are just not equipped to deal with losses like this. We are nonprofit. We just want to help.”
With the tables turned and Emancipet in need after the break-in, help arrived almost as soon as the crime was discovered, Musick said.
She credited UPS and the Internet for making it easier for them to coordinate the logistical nightmare.
“Thank God for because there is no way we could have stayed open if it weren’t for the deliveries,” Musick said.
If not for a strange coincidence, even the shipment of supplies would not have been enough.
Although the clinic is closed Mondays, a surgery technician stopped in to pick up some supplies and found the broken window, Musick said.
Had the crew not shown up until Tuesday as usual, they would have had to close.
“That would put us behind the 8-ball as far as what we are trying to do here,” she said. “Every day we try to do 30 surgeries and 40 preventative-care visits. If we miss just one day, it will really hurt our progress.”
Carroll Smith, spokeswoman for the Killeen Police Department, said that the burglary was under investigation and no arrests had been made as of Tuesday.
“It’s an active case,” Smith said.