Posted at: 04/29/2013 7:26 PM
By: Joseph Lynch, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Peace in horse country was shattered by thieves targeting stables in Corrales and the North Valley.
Thousands of dollars worth of riding equipment has been stolen.
Five hits in just the last few weeks make this a different kind of horse thievery, residents said.
Padlocks, motion sensors and even good lighting weren't enough to keep thieves from hitting the same stable in Corrales on back to back nights last week.
According to owner Sheen Martin they went for the good stuff.
"These are high dollar training saddles and these ladies- this is their hobby,” Martin said. “This is their love. And you know I feel like I have let them down."
Martin sank her life savings into her home and stables three years ago.
Many of the things that were taken weren't even hers, they belonged to her clients.
"You feel violated you know. We walk through here, our home is right here. We feel safe and now we don't feel so safe,” she said.
There is more.
Cynthia Ramsey boards her horses at the Cottonwood Stables in Albuquerque's North Valley.
Thieves made off with custom bridles and bits that were made for her horses.
Ramsey said the thefts have people in the horse community talking about ways to protect their stables.
"There have been other barns in the area that have been hit,” Ramsey said. “They definitely knew what they were doing. They popped the lock very easily."
Cottonwood Stables owner Lisa Helper said that up until now.
She thought locks and lights were enough to keep there horses and clients things safe.
"They broke the lock,” Helper said. “I don't know how much more security I can do."
What's the damage?
Two of the saddles taken from the Corrales stables are worth about $5,000 dollars each.
Investigators think thieves take the high priced goods out of state to be sold at horse shows.