Neighbors concerned about Christmas decor vandalism, theft


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – While some say this should be the time of year for peace and goodwill, it seems that crimes like vandalism and theft are actually up.

Neighbors near Paseo Del Norte and Ventura said they are frustrated that people are destroying their holiday decorations for no apparent reason.

Many people love showing their holiday spirit this time of year. “I decorate for Christmas and most people I know decorate for Christmas,” Deborah Baldwin, who lives in the heights, said.

You can find bright lights, nativity sets or festive figurines on just about every street throughout town.

“We do it for the kids and the community,” neighbor Bob Sanchez said. “It is all apart of Christmas. We all love it, right?”

Apparently, not everyone is a fan. Shane Seery said he found his polar bear inflatable slashed in his front yard on Christmas Day. His home surveillance shows two people running up and stabbing it.

“Just the fact that you go through the effort to put up things you like that are nice to celebrate the season, and then people destroy it,” Seery said.

He isn’t the only one hit by Christmas crime. A number of people have posted videos on social media showing inflatables being stolen from their yards. “It’s too sad that some of these people, Grinches I guess you could call them, will come and destroy your property,” Sanchez said.

Neighbors said they have started to keep watch as they believe property crime has become an expectation. “You are always wondering whether or not to leave it out and if it will get damaged or stolen,” Sanchez said.

“I do think that everyone knows a certain percentage of their decorations or packages at their house will fall victim to vandalism or theft,” Baldwin said.

Seery said while he’s bought two more inflatables and does not plan to file a police report, he would like to have a word with whoever destroyed his decor. “I would like to tell them to have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year rather than ruin people’s good time,” Seery said.

Seery said he is actually surprised his Christmas decor wasn’t vandalized sooner, as he and his neighbors have had their cars broken into and tires slashed before.

APD said thefts of all kinds increase this time of year, but Christmas decorations have become a more common target.

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