Car theft nets 369K in Cloud Cap equipment

August 24, 2011

At 5:40 a.m. Aug. 14 Officer Juan Pulido responded to a reported car prowl at a residence near May Street and Rocky Road. The police report turned out to be significantly less than routine.

The overnight theft was reported by an employee of Cloud Cap Technology - a Hood River-based Goodrich company and producer of equipment for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).

The items stolen from the vehicle parked outside the employee's residence included two UAS turret cameras that were to be used for demonstration at an UAS trade show.

The pair of camera's retail value is listed as $360,000.

"These cameras will have no value for the people who stole them because they are not operable without the software," said Ross Hoag, Co-founder and principle engineer for Cloud Cap. "They are also controlled items on the munitions list. If anyone tries to sell them, they will get themselves into a lot of trouble."

Cloud Cap is offering a reward for the return of the cameras, under a "no questions asked" policy. Notices have been posted on both Gorge.net, under the electronics tab, and Craigslist - Portland, under lost and found.

The $1,000 reward, for return of the stolen items or information leading to the return of the large tan colored rolling case with all contents in original condition, can be obtained by calling 541-387-2120 extension 245, where callers may leave a message.

"I'm sure whoever stole these has no idea what they are," said Hoag, also noting that the U.S. Department of State and the FBI have been notified of the theft.

Cloud Cap sales and marketing director, Kelly Garcia stated in a follow-up email that it "would require significant technical ability to actually make them operate."

Although the company is insured for the loss, Hoag stated, "We just want to get them back. That is the important thing."

According to Hood River Police Officer Juan Pulido's report, someone entered the vehicle Aug. 13, after 21:30 and stole a tan Pelican brand case containing the cameras and related technology items.

The vehicle's owner reportedly approached the car around 5 a.m. on Aug. 14 and noticed the black Honda CRV had been rifled through and the case stolen. The employee immediately called the police.

According to Pulido the employee stated that the vehicle had been locked the night before. The employee also stated that the neighbors were having a large party.

Pulido, at the time of the investigation, did not observe any evidence of forced entry. He did report that the exterior of the vehicle was very dusty and he observed hand prints on the door handles in the dust.

The Cloud Cap company description of the stolen TASE gimbal camera models states: "Small, lightweight gyro-stabilized camera systems … for a host of surveillance, inspection and monitoring applications."

The stolen items were specified as follows:

One TASE 300 Cloud Cap Technology UAV turret camera - approximately 7" x 7"x 9" and six pounds.

One TASE 400 Cloud Cap Technology UAV turret camera within plastic tube housing approximately 7" x 7" x 10" and seven and a half pounds.

One Cloud Cap Navigator GPS receiver

One Cloud Cap Piccolo SL laser altimeter

Various wire harnesses and cables

Flash thumb drives with video and software with labels on them made with a label maker

One small hard drive about the size of an iPhone.

Employee business cards

One large Pelican case 2'x2'x3', tan-colored

The employee told Pulido in the incident report that the camera equipment would not be able to be used, as the thieves did not have the operational software.

According to Jim Siekkinen, site director for Cloud Cap, the hard drive and thumb drives stolen with the cameras contained only marketing materials.

Leaving the employee's driveway on Aug. 14, Pulido noticed several vehicles in a field, apparently remaining from the neighbor's party. Pulido inspected them and noticed some of them had also been rifled through.

Neighbors were questioned but provided no additional information. Serial numbers for the cameras have been entered as stolen.

Anyone with information on the theft or equipment may also phone the Hood River Police Department at 541-387-5256.

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Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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