Police Say 2 ‘Grinches’ Stole Presents Bought To Surprise Foster Kids on Christmas

mitsy mcgoo/Flickr

Christmas toys
mitsy mcgoo/Flickr

Police are calling out two new grinches this year who tried to steal joy from those who deserve it more: children in foster care. Officers publicly dubbed 24-year-old Joseph Betancourt and 40-year-old Marie Bennett from Woodland, California, "grinches" after they caught them allegedly stealing toys meant to cheer up foster kiddos up this holiday season.

  • The duo was arrested Friday after police received a call reporting the theft.

    According to the Red Bluff Police Department's Facebook page, police were first alerted to the problem after a staff member at Children First Foster Family Agency called at 10:51 a.m. about a burglary that had happened the night before.

    "A large amount of toys that were being held there for children for Christmas presents were taken," the post stated.

    A photo of some of the stolen items meant for the children was also shared, including new sleeping bags, fishing poles, large screen televisions, and a PlayStation 4.

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  • When police arrived, they reviewed surveillance video, which clued them into who was responsible.

    Using the footage, officers were able to determine that the suspects were coming and going from the residence next door. 

    "Officers located the subjects inside that matched video surveillance," the statement explained.

  • Once police were able to connect Betancourt and Bennett to the crime, the pair was arrested and taken to Tehama County Jail.

    Police were able to recover all of the stolen toys, and Christmas will go on as planned, according to Good Morning America

    Meanwhile, the Red Bluff Police Department had some harsh words for the burgling pair online. "These 'Grinches' will not be stealing Christmas from the kids on our watch," the statement read.

    Betancourt and Bennett were charged with trespassing, conspiracy and burglary, People reported, and were being held on a bond of $50,000 each. 

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