Instruments worth $10K stolen from Ottawa Scouts group

A Scouts group in Ottawa is lamenting the theft of nearly $10,000 worth of instruments from their building in Vanier.

Instruments stolen from Ahlul-Bayt Centre in Vanier on Nov. 26

Mohamad Karout, chair of Ahlul-Bayt scouts, says they're not going to let the theft stop them from moving forward with their music program. 0:43

A Scouts group is lamenting the theft of instruments worth nearly $10,000 from their building in Vanier.

Four trumpets, two saxophones, two keyboards — a Yamaha and a Korg — and a full drum set were taken from a side building at the Ahlul-Bayt Centre at 200 Baribeau St. around 5 a.m. Monday, Nov. 26, leaving the group with just cymbals and another drum kit.

Since the group only meets on Sundays, it was almost a week before they realized the instruments had been taken, said Mohamad Karout, chair of the Ahlul-Bayt Scouts.

Instruments worth nearly $10,000 were stolen from a side building of the Ahlul-Bayt Centre in Vanier on Nov. 26, 2017. (Hugo Belanger/CBC)

The group has around 200 girls and boys, some as young as five years old, who have been learning to play the various instruments to participate in marching bands and musicals, Karout said.

The kids would often practice for hours both inside the building and outside on nice days. He said the children were disappointed when they learned the instruments were stolen.

"Obviously, they've put a lot of time learning these [instruments], now they're going back to just practicing on a pad instead of the drums," he said.

The theft also came just weeks before the scouts were supposed to participate in a marching band event on Dec. 21.

Police suspect thieves trying to sell instruments

Ottawa police said they were unable to obtain surveillance images and are appealing to the public to be on the lookout for anyone trying to sell items either online or at a pawn shop.

Many of the instruments had been donated to the group, and the group hopes to find new ones soon so the kids can start practicing again.

"It's a little setback. It's a little disappointing," Karout said.

"Nevertheless, we learn to live with it and we're going to start over and we're going to continue. That's how we were taught. We're not going to be set back and we're going to give it a second try with what we have right now."


  • An earlier version of this article said the children were part of a Scouts Canada group. In fact, they are affiliated with the Baden Powell Scouts' Association.
    Jan 09, 2018 6:53 PM ET