Man renovating house is fed up with thieves

By Christy Hutchings - bio | email

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - A bit of a mystery for people who live in Ardsley and Baldwin Parks. Homeowners are starting to find unusual things missing from their yards, but nothing that your average thieves would want. Instead, historical architectural items vanishing in the night.

Will Perkins was just the latest victim at his home in Baldwin Park, where he's renovating. "I've had a cast iron claw foot tub stolen and a stack of cast iron stair trails. There's plenty of security lighting in the lane behind the house and it would have taken more than three people to move any of these items, and somehow it was just taken overnight," said Perkins.

Perkins says he's not alone, and the problem is not just in Baldwin Park. "Just the other night in Ardsley Park, where my primary residence is, the lady who lives behind me in the lane had her wrought iron gate lifted right off of its hinges and stolen," said Perkins.

Perkins isn't alone. Jennifer Nguyen lives on 45th Street and had her wrought iron gate stolen from her. She says someone just came in, picked it up and took off. She decided to go over to Pinch of the Past Architectural Antiques in Savannah to see if someone tried to sell it to them.  As soon as she walked in the door, she saw it. That's where she met Perkins, and learned she wasn't alone.

After hearing Nguyen's story, and his neighbors he came up with a plan. He wants victims to start calling antique dealers after they've reported the crime to police.

"Let them know because we are usually the first other people that get to see this merchandise after it goes missing. We do everything we can to screen the people who are selling to us, but if we know something has gone missing we know what to look for and we can provide that information from whoever we purchased it from to police and help recover these items," said Perkins.

He's hoping by everyone being aware of the problem fewer people will become victims.

Some of the thefts in Baldwin Park have not been reported to police. Many times people feel officers are too busy to deal with thefts, but Savannah-Chatham police say that is not the case.

To report thefts, call your precinct, and ask for a Community Resource Officer to take a report.

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