Wichita family reunited with stolen Christmas decoration

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Thanks to a tip and some detective work a Wichita family has been reunited with its stolen holiday decoration.

“I got on the phone first and called my sister and said the Grinch has been found!” said Lynn Miller.

Lynn Miller said her inflatable Grinch was stolen from her Wichita yard in early December. The Grinch was a gift from Miller’s deceased sister.

“My little sister had cancer. She bought this Grinch in 2004 and then in 2005 she came down with cancer and she gave the Grinch to me at Christmas time and said I want you to have this Grinch. That was the last Christmas we were together and then she passed away in 2006,” Miller said.

Miller has put the Grinch on display in her yard for more than a decade. Each year her family takes a photo with it. After thieves swiped it, Miller said she was worried the tradition had been broken. However, shortly after KSN reported about the theft someone contacted Miller with information about her Grinch.

“I had a message from one of my friends,” Miller said. “It’s a picture of my Grinch in a front yard.”

The yard in the picture was just several blocks away from Miller’s home.

“Oh my gosh. I wanted to jump in the car and go get him,” she said.

Miller decided to hold off. She called Wichita police and sent her husband to the area to do a little detective work.

“About 15 minutes later, my husband called and said it’s definitely him. He’s got Band-Aids up on top of him where he had holes punctured. He said it’s definitely our Grinch,” Miller said.

Police soon arrived on scene, retrieved the Grinch from the house and returned it to Miller and her family.

“It’s wonderful to have him back home,” Miller said.

Miller decided not to press charges in the case. She said she doesn’t want to ruin anyone’s holiday.

“I just hope everybody has a Merry Christmas even the ones that took our Grinch. I hope you still have a Merry Christmas,” she said.

Miller said if she decides to place the Grinch in her yard again, she will likely install security cameras.