Christmas crime: Hoods storm family's front lawn to steal reindeer
It's one family's true story of the grinches who stole Christmas.
In the dead of night a number of thieves cruised by to steal some festive ornaments from the front lawn of a Middleton Grange family's home.
The heartless theft left nine-year-old Chiara Velardi in tears and all but shattered her Christmas spirit.
Now police are asking for the public's help to track down the grinches.
When Velardi family went to bed on Thursday night their Christmas lights display in Sydney's southwest was a sight to behold.
Then some heartless thieves came and pinched the reindeer centrepieces that Chiara loved so much.
"Because they bring joy to the world at Christmas time when Jesus was born," Chiara said.
The carload of hoods stopped to carry out their raid in the middle of the night; a censor light and camera spotted them in the act. One reindeer was damaged in the theft.
"I can't believe that. They broke the neck," Chiara said.
"You shouldn't do that anymore and you should say sorry to my dad and my mum and me."
Chiara's father Roy had some sterner words for the people responsible.
"Someone that does something like this needs a good clip over the ear to be honest," he said.
Police are investigating.
Anyone with information can call Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.