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Community members pitch in to help local businesses affected by fires and burglaries

<i>KPTV</i><br/>After weeks of local businesses being hit with burglaries or devastating fires
After weeks of local businesses being hit with burglaries or devastating fires

By Connor McCarthy

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    PORTLAND, Oregon (KPTV) — After weeks of local businesses being hit with burglaries or devastating fires, community members are helping out, creating a string of GoFundMe’s for affected businesses.

One of those is Kenton Antiques that was burglarized this past week. The owner, Maureen Bachmann, said who ever broke in stole, jewelry, a camera, and an iPad, all valued between $5,000 to $7,000. She said she arrived to work Tuesday morning to find her business vandalized.

“They spent quite a lengthy amount of time breaking through the gate and then smashing out a door,” Bachmann said.

This isn’t the first time Kenton Antiques has been broken into. Bachman said in October of 2020, burglars stole between $20,000 and $30,000 worth of items, including jewelry.

“It’s been rough up here,” Bachmann said. “There have been a lot of armed burglaries recently, shop break-ins, I don’t know a shop in this neighborhood that hasn’t been broken into at least once in the last year.”

To help recover from this year’s break-in, a community member set up a GoFundMe. As of Friday, there have been more than $3,000 dollars worth of donations.

But she’s not the only one. Community members have also set up GoFundMe’s for St. John High School, Thai Touch Cuisine, and Hiddenbed Oregon. All of them either experienced a burglary or devastating fire.

“I don’t want to cry but it was an incredibly sweet gesture” Bachmann said. “It’s hard for me to ask for help and it’s just nice to see people chipping in to help out where they can.”

However, Bachmann said the community shouldn’t have to rely on GoFundMe’s to recover from set backs.

“We’re out there kicking around that communal 20 to the next,” Bachmann said. “It would be nice to have things like safety in place and an environment where break-ins weren’t necessary to begin with.”

Bachman said she is adding more security to her business. But she added all she can do is pick up the mess left by the burglars and move forward with the Kenton community by her side.

“There’s an incredible community up here and being able to be there for my community, help them out,” Bachmann said. “I’m president of the Kenton business association, have been for over 10 years now. This is one of the best neighborhoods to live in, to hang out in, and to have a business in.”

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