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Family reunited with homemade Christmas decorations, crediting tip from community members

The family asked for the community's help after home surveillance video captured someone pulling into their driveway and stealing the decorations.

TRINITY, N.C. — UPDATE: As of Sunday night, Cheryl Collins says she has recovered her Christmas decorations, due to a tip from someone in the community.

ORIGINAL STORY: The Collins family has treasured their hand-painted Christmas decorations, proudly displaying them in their yard for nearly a decade. But now, the family is asking for the community's help after home surveillance video captured someone pulling into their driveway and stealing the decorations in broad daylight.

"How bold to steal Christmas decorations, that's a Grinch for sure. It worries me that this type of person, being that bold, what they're capable of doing," Cheryl Collins said.

Cheryl said she filed a report with the Randolph County Sheriff's Office after watching back the 3-minute video showing the thief stealing the Christmas decorations on Thursday, December 3 around 12:30 p.m. from their home on Tom Hill Road in Trinity.

The Christmas decorations stolen were a wooden doe and buck, painted white with red ribbons. Cheryl said her dad handmade the deer, ordering the design, cutting the wood, painting and maintaining them.

Credit: Cheryl Collins

The surveillance video shows a person driving a four-door vehicle, pulling into the family's driveway on a sunny afternoon. The driver exits the vehicle and makes four trips, stealing the yard decorations piece by piece, loading them into their back seat, then driving away without hesitation. The entire episode took less than 3 minutes.

"My video is not that clear because it's from a long distance, but the majority of people think it's a female who walks with a limp. We have not yet determined the type of vehicle. We are still trying to get more video on that," Cheryl said.

Cheryl took to Facebook, writing a post about the theft that has since received hundreds of comments and shares. She said the outpouring of community support has been surprising and a silver lining.

"I am hoping they will stand out to somebody if they see them. I have numerous friends who are riding around, looking, hoping they will see them out in the yard or something," Cheryl said.

In the meantime, she is also working with her alarm company to try and get better video and asking the community to be on the lookout for the white deer Christmas decorations.

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