Grinch tries to steal Florida family’s Christmas, police help replace gifts

By Daniel S Levine,

A real-life Grinch tried to steal a Tampa, Fla. family’s Christmas, but police were not going to let that happen, replacing the children’s gifts. Unfortunately though, their puppy is still missing.

Melody Russell, 33, told police that thieves went into her home while she was working on Monday, reports The Associated Press. When she came home, the back door was open and the presents under the tree were missing. Their 12-week-old Shih Tzu, named Honey, was also missing.

Her children, Marissa, 7, and Marcus, 5, were also not home either. They were at Russell’s sister’s house. She said that Marissa was in tears for a half an hour when she learned that Honey was gone. “My kids are so in love with that puppy,” Russell said.

Although Russell said that she had only bought small gifts for her children, clearly Tampa police knew that they had to do something to make their Christmas better. According to the Tampa Bay Times, 10 officers and a group of dispatchers chipped in to buy Marcus and Marissa new toys. The toys were delivered on Tuesday morning.

Police have investigated the incident, but have not arrested suspects yet. They are still hoping to find Honey and did release a picture of the puppy.

If you have any information, you can call Tampa police at (813) 231-6130 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-873-8477.


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