History of The Grinch
Photo: jackmac34/Pixabay
Photo: jackmac34/Pixabay

Florida porch thieves steal kids' Christmas toys, books

Home surveillance cameras captured that conversation between two Florida women Monday afternoon as they snatched five packages from the porch of a Tampa-area home, WFTS reported.

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In a news release, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office said the thefts occurred around 1:30 p.m. in a Riverview subdivision. The women drove away in a dark-colored Volvo SUV, WTVT reported.

In a Facebook post, Neal Rivera posted the surveillance video and still shots of the porch pirates.

"These nice young lady’s (sic) were worried that someone would steal our unattended packages so they thought they would take them home and keep them safe. I’m sure they will bring them back later,” he wrote.

Rivera said his phone went off with camera notifications when the packages were delivered, and then it went off again when they were taken, WTVT reported.

“I’m not upset about the items they took,” Rivera told the television station. “It was the attitude they came in and they made a comment, 'Oh, look it's kids’ clothes. It's Children's Place.' And they were like excited about it. So, they knew they were talking little kids stuff.”

On Tuesday, Rivera’s phone went off again, but this time his surveillance camera recorded an act of kindness, WTVT reported.

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“I got a notification on the front door, and of course I quickly went to my phone. And as I look at my front door, it's our church family coming and dropping off gifts here, waving at the camera saying ‘I hope you get your stuff back, but here's something in the meantime,’” Rivera told the television station. “I don’t have to worry about my kids not having something. That's not my concern. I just want the people caught."

In his Facebook post, Rivera said he would not have cared if the women had stolen items he bought for himself.

“If they would have just asked I would have bought their kids even more than they stole,” he wrote.

Another Riverview man, Mike Hayes, filed a report with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, including video that appears to show the same two women taking packages from his porch, WFTS reported.

The Sheriff’s Office is asking anybody with information to call them at (813) 247-8200.

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