Thieves Steal Pricey Planters From Highland Park Homes

Heavy pots can cost several hundred dollars

Highland Park police are trying investigating a bizarre crime spree -- the thefts of several pricey large planters.

Sgt. Lance Koppa said six large pots have been stolen from front porches since Nov. 20.

"They're driving around -- they're identifying which ones they want to take and come back a few hours later and they snatch them off the front porch," he said.

Koppa said the pots can cost several hundred dollars.

"They're expensive," said Anne Palles, who lives a few doors down from where several pots were stolen. "You know, these are custom pots and, gosh, if they're taking them with plants in them, that's an extra bonus. That's more of a savings."

Palles said thieves tried to steal her giant planters but couldn't because they are partially anchored to the patio with plumbing.

"This pot had been scooted over closer to the edge, and we didn't think anything about it at the time," she said.

The planter the thieves tried to steal from her porch weighs more than 300 pounds. Another large bowl near her front door weighs even more.

"It took four gentlemen to lift that center pot over there, just to get it in place without dirt," Palles said.

Koppa said there must be a market for stolen pottery but, so far, police can't find it.

"We've gone out to Traders Village. We've gone out to Canton. We've checked Craigslist, and we've looked for these items that have been taken, and we haven't seen them pop up anywhere," he said. "We tried to locate them, but because they don't have a unique number or serial number on them, it's hard to find the property that's been stolen."

Investigators are asking residents to be on the lookout for a white Jeep Patriot and a dark van with bay doors. The two vehicles have been spotted near homes where planters were stolen.

Koppa said the thieves might be pretending to look at Christmas lights while casing homes.

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