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We features the remarkable restoration of this landmark building recently -- now it's been vandalized

DAVID F. ASHTON - Matt Froman, the man credited with keeping the historic Phoenix Pharmacy building from the wrecking ball, peers through a hole made by a criminal who kicked is way through walls, from one office to another.  After years of effort, Matt Froman, an owner of Foster the Phoenix LLC, was happy to have the century-old landmark in the Foster-Powell neighborhood, the "Phoenix Pharmacy Building" ready for its opening again as a business building in May.

But, on the morning of Monday, June 13th, his tenants – those in upstairs offices, and Foster Outdoor, an outdoor adventure shop on the ground floor – told him the building had been ransacked and burglarized overnight.

It didn't take long for the sporting goods store be able to reopen. But, for the tenants who occupy the upstairs office spaces, it was a disaster.

"We think it was one man who hoisted himself onto the neighboring building's roof by climbing on top of a stolen U-Haul truck, then climbed up onto the lower part of our roof at the back of our building," Froman reported.

"Then, using a large screwdriver or crowbar – likely, his only tool – broke open a window atop the second story stairwell," Froman told THE BEE.

The manager of the nearest U-Haul Store, on S.E. Powell Boulevard at 50th Avenue, confirmed to Froman that their surveillance video cameras recorded a man stealing the the truck used in the burglary from their lot the previous Sunday night.

After trying to jimmy open the new office doors with the tool, the criminal soon gave up. Instead, he started kicking holes in the drywall into, and between, offices – making holes large enough for him to get inside.

Most offices had little to steal that could be easily fenced for drug money; but the crook did snatch some petty cash.

"What's really weird, and might be the sign of someone high on drugs, was that the guy tossed over upholstered furniture, and slit open the bottoms, apparently looking for valuables – as if tenants would hoard gold or diamonds in their chairs!" Froman exclaimed.

"This certainly has been unsettling to me – another challenge to overcome, in this 10-year-project – but, it's been a real blow to our people in the upstairs offices, who have lost days – maybe a week – of work and income.

"My next steps along this journey is to fix the office walls and doors, and harden our security."

The building is situated at 6615 S.E. Foster Road. Stop by and see the splendid result of this local historic restoration project done by local folks.


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