Waipahu Intermediate students will return to school Friday after important video production equipment was stolen. But, cameras were rolling when the burglar broke in, and his crime was all caught on tape.
Tony Arneho spends many evenings at the Olelo Community Media Center editing together programs he felt are important to Hawaii.
"A lot of people don't know what is going on behind the scenes. We as community members want our neighborhoods to be aware of what's happening out there," said Ewa beach resident Arneho.
Community members can use the equipment four nights a week, while Waipahu Intermediate students use the facility on school days.
Each learn about video production.
The Waipahu Center is full of cameras, computers and other hi-tech equipment.
On July 11, a burglar broke in, smashed his way into locked cabinets and rooms, and took three hi-definition cameras.
"We look at our equipment as resources for the community to use. The theft makes a big difference because we only have a limited supply of HD cameras," said Olelo Community Media Center Manager Neal Rivera.
Two laptops were also taken, one from the school, the other from the Olelo program. Those laptops enable people to continue editing their projects from home.
Thousands of dollars in gear is now gone. So is a sense of safety at the center, which has been used by the community for the past five years.
"it is disheartening. It's also a safety issue for us. We want to feel safe and secure in our building," added Rivera.
"How sad. How much Olelo does for the community. But there's good and bad everywhere," said Arneho.
Temporary locks have now been put in place until more permanent repairs can be made to the center's doors.
This isn't the first time the school has been broken into this summer. The school principal told KITV earlier this summer, a man smashed his way into several buildings and stole bathroom fixtures.
This time though, the criminal was caught in the act -- at least on tape.
Now police need help to identify the suspect. If you have any information on this case, you're asked to call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300.