Reward offered after equipment stolen from planes at airpark

HOUSTON - The owner of a local flight school is offering a $2,000 reward for anyone who can help him find out who stole thousands of dollars' worth of equipment from airplanes at Weiser Airpark.

Harris County deputies said it happened sometime between Wednesday night and Thursday morning at the airpark in Cypress.

"It looks like they drilled through the window and then smashed it out," said Ben Paradis, owner of The Flight School Inc. "Then they were able to open the latch of the door."

He says crucial flight equipment was taken from inside including transponders, specialized GPS devices and intercoms. Paradis said not only was his plane burglarized but another man's too.

"Our (equipment) is $12,500 and (the other owner) is looking at about another $6,500. So it's almost $19,000 worth of just parts and you got to put the labor in to getting that stuff back installed," said Paradis.

He believes whomever did it was familiar with small aircraft.

"They knew which tools to be able to take the equipment out," Paradis said. "They had a drill to get in that window. So I don't think it was just teenagers or some random act. Someone knew what they were doing."

He added that without the stolen equipment, he can't fly his plane. And that hurts his business.

"The down time is very important in the flight training business," he said. "You can't really afford to have the plane sit here. It's troublesome because there are other aircraft similarly equipped out here. So if we don't catch this person this time, I think he's gonna do it again."

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

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