The owners of a wig store that was broken into on Friday morning say their hearts are broken for their clients, who were mainly cancer therapy patients awaiting special orders to be ready by Christmas.
Thousands of dollars worth of wigs and hair loss products were stolen from the West Coast Wigs store in Vancouver late last week when thieves forced the lock and took off with the goods but left a laser-hair-therapy machine, computers and chequebooks untouched.
“My heart breaks for these people,” said Ilika Smith, daughter of the store owner Lynda Smith. “It’s not just our livelihood; it’s that we can’t get orders in for a couple of weeks, and people could go right through Christmas with a bald head. It can be really devastating for them.”
Roughly 20 wigs were taken, both synthetic and human hair wigs, but Smith said they appeared to target brunette hairpieces in particular.
“Most of the darker ones are gone and the blond ones were left. It’s very odd,” she said.
Police have advised the mother and daughter team to keep an eye out for their merchandise on Craigslist, as it may have been a specific target.
North Vancouver RCMP Const. Sherri Wade said police dusted for fingerprints, but no other forensic evidence was found in the store.
“It’s an unusual robbery indeed,” Wade said. “The blinds were drawn, so a person driving by wouldn’t see what’s inside. I would say it was targeted.”
West Coast Wigs, which Ilika describes as a “mother-daughter business”, has been operating in Vancouver for 41 years and more than 80 per cent of their clients are cancer treatment patients.
Ilika said: “The sad part, the part that really upsets me, is that a lot of (the stolen wigs) are orders waiting for people…with cancer who have to wait two weeks for their order to come in anyway, and now they have to wait some more.”