Christmas gifts, computers stolen from Sophia Academy - News, Weather and Classifieds for Southern New England

Christmas gifts, computers stolen from Sophia Academy

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PROVIDENCE -

A middle school for girls in Providence was robbed of dozens of computers and donated gifts meant for its students.

Leaders of Sophia Academy on Branch Avenue told NBC 10 thieves broke in through a bulkhead sometime over the weekend.

Sophia Academy is a private non-profit school for girls from low income families.

"What a horrible thing to happen nine days before Christmas," said Sharon Lloyd Clark, the school's development director. To target a school like us is really mean-spirited."

And it seems the crooks were in the school for some time.

They took out quite a haul -- 50 laptop computers, 19 Kindle Fire tablets, three iMac computers from the art classroom, seven LCD projectors, and an iPad.

Some equipment was damaged, too.

The main office was trashed and the safe was smashed open.

"It was pretty devastating. It really looked like there had been some sort of disaster," said Assistant Head of School Meg Governor.

In another room, 61 gift bags, one meant for each student, that had been donated through a charity for the holiday season, were taken as well.  Each had two presents and a gift card in it.

"It was really obvious that they were taking the kids' gifts. That, I think, made me feel the worst because it's just so heartless," Governor said.

Students were sent home for the day Monday as administrators dealt with the mess.

The stolen gift bags came from Gregg's Restaurants Giving Tree donation drive in partnership with NBC 10.

The church next door to the school, St. Edwards, is already covering the cost of the gift cards that were in the bags.

And NBC 10 has also learned that Hasbro is donating $25,000 to the school.

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