Thief steals van from school for hearing-impaired kids

SHORELINE, Wash. -- A thief has put dozens of deaf children at a disadvantage by stealing a van those students count on for their education.

The van plays a key part in the curriculum at the Shoreline campus of the Northwest School for Hearing-Impaired Children.

The school depends on its vans to take students on a wide range of field trips to libraries and the Seattle Children's Theatre. The students, who are taught sign language, also make frequent visits to other schools where they interact with kids who can hear.

"This is going to be a real hardship for us," said Dr. Barbara Luetke who contacted the Problem Solvers.

Police said the stolen vehicle is a gray 2000 Chevrolet Astrovan.

Aside from the van, the thief also stole a half-dozen car seats and various supplies. Money is tight and the school needs help to get these things replaced.

The school hopes its pleas are heard, and the thief brings back the van or someone calls police with a tip.