Not one happy Christmas week so far for a Lakeland mum and her two daughters, ages 8 and 11.
According to Polk County Sheriff’s Officedetectives are looking for a suspect who broke into the home of a Lakeland family and stole their Christmas presents and other items.
Authorities said the victim left his home at 7 a.m. Monday to meet family members for breakfast. Moments after he left, “guess who’s coming, old Grinch himself,” the ever-colorful Sheriff Grady Judd said in a press conference video released by the department.
When the woman, a single mother, Judd said, returned home around 11:30 a.m., she saw her front door had been forced open and her home ransacked. All the wrapped Christmas presents were missing. So was a corporate laptop and a flat-screen TV.
The “Christmas Grinch 2021”
“He’s a Grinch, we always have to have one,” Judd said, holding up a photo of a man dressed in black, holding Christmas presents wrapped in red paper, taken from surveillance video.
“There’s always a Christmas Grinch that wants me to feature him as this year’s 2021 Christmas Grinch. Now obviously this guy’s got eggnog for a brain because we have video of him bursting into this house,” Judd said.
Detectives believe the man may be driving a 2019 or newer dark-colored four-door Chevrolet Malibu.
“This Grinch must be arrested and held accountable for his criminal acts. Thankfully detectives are working with Polk Sheriff’s Charities to ensure these children have a Merry Christmas despite this horrific act,” Judd said.
Can you help ?
If you have any information about this burglary, the department asks you to call Heartland Crime Stoppers at 1-800-226-TIPS.
This story was originally published December 22, 2021 11:59 a.m.