Santa wanted for stealing present

SANTA arrived at an Ipswich home early this year - but instead of delivering presents, decided to steal them.When Mary, 61, of Kerry Avenue, heard a knock at the door on Tuesday evening and looked out of a window to see Santa and a teenage helper fleeing down the road at first she put it down to festive high spirits.

SANTA arrived at an Ipswich home early this year - but instead of delivering presents, decided to steal them.

When Mary, 61, of Kerry Avenue, heard a knock at the door on Tuesday evening and looked out of a window to see Santa and a teenage helper fleeing down the road at first she put it down to festive high spirits.

But when she noticed that her front door had been opened and a wrapped present stolen from inside the porch she realised they had just been burgled - by Father Christmas.

The situation took a further twist when husband Brian, who chased the thieves for a short while, found that the light-fingered little helper had shed a shoe - Cinderella style.


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Police now hope the clue will help identify the culprit.

Mary, a grandmother of seven who asked The Evening Star not to print her surname, said: “We can see the funny side of it, particularly at this time of year because we have a light-hearted outlook on life.

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“But there is a serious side as well because it was burglary. If they had chosen a home where a more elderly person lived alone it could have been very upsetting for that person.”

As the shoe is a fairly common black, slip-on school style shoe rather than a unique glass slipper, police will have to rely on matching DNA found on it to find their culprit.

Luckily the present was found unwrapped and discarded a short distance from the couple's home.

It was a photo box, from a friend who had handed out presents early because he is due to undergo a serious operation before Christmas.

Mary said: “When I first realised it had gone I was worrying about how we were going to tell the person who gave it to us - they would never believe it was stolen by Father Christmas and would think we had just lost it or something.”

Problems with teenagers are not new to the couple.

Mary's husband, delivery driver Brian, 61, said: “It used to be a lovely area to live but this sort of thing has got more and more common - although they aren't usually dressed as Santa.

“We have had eggs and other things thrown at our window, and on one occasion 20 car aerials were damaged in one night.

“A few people who live on the road have installed security cameras in the hope of catching them in the act.

“I only called the police when I realised we had found one of their shoes - and thought they might come back for it.

“But the officer said we did the right thing because it was burglary, even though our front door was unlocked and they just reached in they still entered our property.”

The burglary took place at around 6.30pm on Tuesday .

Father Christmas and the male accomplice are both described as in their teens, and of average height.

Anyone who has any information about this offence should contact Dc Jason Rice at Ipswich CID on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Have you fallen victim to a Christmas crook? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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