Local News

Real-life Grinch steals gifts from Fayetteville home

Posted December 17, 2008 11:21 p.m. EST
Updated December 18, 2008 7:45 a.m. EST

— Cumberland County sheriff's deputies say someone broke into a family's Fayetteville home Wednesday and stole their Christmas presents.

When Michael Schillinger, 17, came home from school, he found the back door of his house had been kicked in.

“I noticed this (door broken), and that's when I realized somebody had broken into the house,” Schillinger said.

He immediately called his parents and got out of the house, at 719 Foxcroft Drive.

“I had to ask him again to repeat it again because I just could not believe it,” his mother, Liberty Schillinger, said.

When the family checked about the house, they discovered most of their electronics were gone.

“We feel violated,” Liberty Schillinger said.

Even more disheartening for the Schillingers was that the thief made off with all but one of their Christmas presents.

“The electronics, the gifts, can be replaced. It's the invasion” that's so bothersome, Liberty Schillinger said.

“It's just the fact that somebody else has forcefully come into our world. It's kind of upsetting, and I'm still a little on edge from it,” father Thomas Schillinger said.

The Schillingers still plan to make the best of the holidays. Liberty Schillinger says she will deliver her Christmas baked goods to friends and neighbors as usual.

“We'll enjoy Christmas and what the spirit of it is for. We just thank God nobody was injured and nobody was hurt and that we're all OK,” Thomas Schillinger said.

Thomas Schillinger says he and his family have lived in the neighborhood for eight years without crime problems.

Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to call the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office at 910-323-1500.