Police in Whitby, Mississauga investigating theft of bronze vases from cemeteries
Rachael D'Amore, CTV News Toronto
Published Thursday, October 11, 2018 11:22AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, October 11, 2018 8:03PM EDT
Nearly 400 vases have disappeared from cemeteries in Whitby and Mississauga, and police say that little is known about who may be responsible in either case.
In Whitby, Durham police are investigating the theft of more than 100 bronze vases from burial plots inside the Mount Lawn Cemetery on Garrard Road.
They believe the vases were stolen sometime between Oct. 3 and Oct. 6.
Lindon Lowe, the Manager of Mount Lawn Funeral Home and Cemetery, said that the vases were taken from the south end of the lawn.
Speaking with CTV News Toronto, Lowe urged the thief to return the stolen property.
“If you have a heart, return the vases. These families have lost loved ones. What if this was your loved one?” he said.
Lisa Knowlton’s mother and brother are buried at Mount Lawn Cemetery. Her family’s graves were one of many targeted by the thieves.
“It’s crazy because, how would they like it if somebody in their family passes away and somebody came along to steal their family’s burial thing. How would they feel?”
Another victim said it was the second time that vases were stolen from the graves of her mother and father.
“The first time was a few years ago and this time was late September,” Karen Parker said.
Durham police Const. George Tudos said that investigators “don’t know the exact motive” of the thieves.
“But in a lot of cases where we have items that were metal, I know that they were sold for scrap or melted and sold for scrap,” Tudos said.
In Mississauga, Peel police are seeking information on the theft of 269 bronze vases from three cemeteries – Mount Peace Cemetery on Cawthra Road, St. Mary’s Cemetery on Dickson Road and Assumption Cemetery on Tomken Road.
Investigators believe the cemeteries were robbed between April 7 and Sept. 24.
The items stolen from the three cemeteries are valued at approximately $67,250.
Police in both cases have not released a description of a suspect or suspects, nor is it known if the incidents are connected.
However, Durham police released a photograph of the type of vase that was stolen in Whitby in hopes it will generate a lead on those responsible.
Anyone with new information about the investigation is being asked to call police or Crime Stoppers anonymously.