Local News

Grinch Steals Backyard Christmas Tree From Raleigh Woman

Posted December 17, 2003 4:38 a.m. EST

— There is a grinch on the loose in downtown Raleigh.

Brenda Sanders' backyard gazebo on East Hargett Street doubles as her screened-in porch. Inside are tons of Christmas decorations, but her centerpiece is missing -- a 7-1/2-foot-tall artificial Christmas tree.

"There were little fake gifts under the tree, beautiful boxes and they are still there," she said.

Evidence from the crime is still on the ground. The grinch broke a few ornaments on the way out while others fell off. Sanders said she was angry at first, but now wonders if someone could not afford to buy a tree on their own.

"I have enough to share, so no one should have had to steal because I would have been glad if they had children and no tree in the house because I have more than I need to share," she said.

Sanders said the pre-lit tree was decorated in red, white and blue. It was a patriotic theme to honor veterans and soldiers. She said she is determined not to let what happened steal her Christmas spirit.

"Maybe Christmas will be brighter for somebody else because of that tree. It hasn't dampened it," she said.

Sanders believes someone took the tree around midnight Sunday while she slept inside her house. The thief was reportedly polite -- the thief latched the door on the way out.