Archive for Thursday, December 14, 2006

Grinch invades Baldwin City

December 14, 2006

It appears that Baldwin City has a Grinch.

"Yeah, we do," said Police Chief Mike McKenna.

It doesn't appear that this Grinch is too picky, nor is he -- or she or they -- seeking high-dollar items. And, to this point, the Grinch isn't causing damage. The first glimpse of the Grinch occurred between 11 p.m. Dec. 7 and 8 a.m. Dec. 8 when the baby Jesus figurine in Jerome Brown's nativity scene vanished. There was no ransom note.

"Nope, not a thing," said Brown, who has lived at 910 Grove for 42 years. "It is the fourth thing I've had stolen out of my yard since the first semester (at Baker University) started and the fourth thing I've had stolen out of my yard in 42 years."

Brown reported the disappearance to the Baldwin City Police Department.

"His neighbors next door are college students and were having a loud party late that night and he opened his window and yelled at them to quiet down," said McKenna. "The next morning, baby Jesus was gone."

That's where the "cheap" comes in.

"Unfortunately, baby Jesus was only valued at $25," said McKenna. "You would think baby Jesus would be worth more than that."

Another standard of Christmas, Santa Claus, also came up missing recently in downtown Baldwin City. One of the Santas put in the flower pots on the corner of Eighth and High streets came up missing. Someone has since hung signs on it stating "Thank you for stealing Santa." McKenna hadn't heard about that heist as of Tuesday.

"No, this is the first report," he said of Brown's missing baby Jesus.

The chief said it's doubtful that the thieves will be caught and he hopes they'll return the items. As for why, he's got a theory there, too.

"It's kind of like any other theft when people are under the influence (of alcohol)," said McKenna. "They wake up the next day and say 'what the heck am I going to do with that?' Hopefully, their conscience will get to them and it will be returned."

Brown is hopeful, too, but will believe it when he sees it.

"I'd like to think so, but I'm not holding my breath," he said.

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