15-Passenger Van Used To Transport Kids With Special Needs Stolen In West LA

WEST LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Authorities say a search is underway for a passenger van that was stolen from a nonprofit group that serves kids with special needs.

The 15-passenger van was taken at some point between Friday night and Saturday from the parking lot of “Leaps n Boundz,” which is located in the 5400 block of Beethoven Street.

It is not clear what time the van was taken though workers had parked it in the lot on Friday.

“Leaps n Boundz” is an organization provides sports, recreation, and social programming for individuals with special needs. The van was also used to deliver Meals on Wheels in the community three days a week.

CBS 2’s Joy Benedict spoke to Joclynn Benjamin, owner of “Leaps n Boundz.”

“I work so hard,” says Benjamin, “and the staff works so hard, to give back. It just feels unfair.”

Benjamin started “Leaps” and its non-profit organization Reachability Foundation ten years ago. They provide adaptive programs and field trips for many with special needs.

“I’ve been coming here for two years, ever since I was 8,” says Emma O’Neill.

“We’re trying to figure out how to honor our commitments.” says Benjamin. “We’re trying to do as much good in the community as we can, but I don’t have $30,000 stashed away.”

To that end, a GoFundMe page has been set up to raise funds. Click here for more information.

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