Woman Says Someone Stole Her Christmas Presents from Car

By: Estephany Escobar Email
By: Estephany Escobar Email

Most people are putting their gifts under the tree.

But one woman said her family won't get to unwrap the presents she bought.

She said someone stole them on Saturday morning, leaving only sadness before the holiday.

Melanie Southers is now keeping a closer eye on her things.

"I never thought this would happen to me. I really didn't," Southers said.

She said she never imagined losing her Christmas gifts in a matter of hours.

"It's very upsetting to me because I worked very long hours and there is nothing I can do about it. The money is gone, that stuff is gone. There's nothing I can do about it," Southers said.

Southers said she wrapped up her gifts and put them in her car around 1:30 a.m. on Saturday.

But six hours later, she just found only one of her nine presents.

She said they also stole her credit card information.

"It was either my fault that I didn't lock it or it locked everything but the driver door," Southers said.

This all happened at her friends' house on Country Club Court.

Her friend Jennifer Alcombright said she felt bad for her friend.

"All those hours she worked. They got taken from her so she basically worked in vain," Alcombright said.

She said this is not unusual in this neighborhood.

"It's one, two, three times a week. It's weekly that something here happens," Alcombright said." Several cars in my two and a half years, have had the windows broke out. At least five that I can think of at the top of my head."

Southers reported the theft to the Harrisonburg Police Department.

She said she is now waiting to find out who stole her presents.

"Harrisonburg Police recommends you to double check your doors, even if you have already locked them with a remote lock and if you're planning on keeping the presents in your car, they recommend you to keep them in your trunk."

Sergeant Pete Ritchie said thefts are fairly common around the city, especially during the holidays.

There's a lot more activity as far as shopping. People are busy. Engaged in doing a lot of activities so they might not focused on their own safety," Ritchie said.

For Southers the holidays will still be jolly with or without presents.

"My Christmas wouldn't be completely ruined without it. It would just be so much better," Southers said.

Just a few hours ago, Southers told me someone gave her some of the money she lost on her gifts.

This case remains under investigation.

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