S. Liza Hockridge just wants the holiday decorations that she says were stolen off her front porch back, as they were Christmas gifts from her late husband.
The 61-year-old widow had brought out some of her outdoor decorations late last week after seeing some of her neighbours put their lights up. Hockridge put up an antique holiday wreath and a solar-lighted cat ornament.
“Those two were out mostly because they were from my late husband,” Hockridge told CTV News Toronto, adding he died just recently during the height of the pandemic.
“I didn’t get a lot of gifts from him, just because he couldn’t afford them. In the past decade, he had a stroke so he wasn’t up and about too much. That’s the only reason that I’m making such a stink and publicizing it everywhere, on social media and stuff, is because I’m hoping somebody might recognize the gifts and maybe I can just convince them to give them back.”
Both items were stolen off her front porch, near Kingston Road and Midland Avenue, early Thursday morning, at around 2:30 a.m., she said. Hockridge noticed they were both gone when she was stepping out of her house to bring in some outdoor furniture ahead of winter.
She said she immediately went in, looked through her surveillance footage to see what happened, and saw two women creep up to her porch and take the decorations away.
In the video obtained by CTV News Toronto, one woman can be seen coming out from the bushes to the right of the camera, flickering her flashlight a few times before crouching up the steps. She can be seen hobbling away to a four-door vehicle idling in the street before another woman comes in the frame, takes the wreath, and saunters off.
“My first reaction was 2:30 in the morning, they looked a little bit inebriated, but they were so young, you know? And the other thing is that they seemed organized,” Hockridge said.
Hockridge went to her neighbours and showed them the footage, asking them to keep on the lookout and be mindful of their own decorations, too. She even created a “WANTED” poster of the two women.
“Somebody suggested I put it on my front door, and that way, if they come by when I have other things out, it might deter them,” Hockridge said.
“Bah Humbug! Be on the lookout for these two Grinches caught on security video on McIntosh Street,” the poster reads.
Toronto police confirmed a report was filed Thursday but did not have any additional information to provide.
“At this time the investigation is in its infancy so there are no updates at this time,” Const. Ashley Visser said in a statement.
Hockridge said she and her neighbours had never had their holiday decorations stolen from their properties – at least in the decades that she’s lived there.
While she doubts she’ll get them back, Hockridge says she’s been monitoring eBay and Kijiji to see if they come up online.
“I just want them back,” Hockridge said.