Grinch steals Fla. family's presents, puppy; police officers chip in to put gifts under tree


TAMPA, Fla. — This “Grinch” was a mean one.

Police say burglars broke into a Florida woman’s home, stole her two children’s gifts from under the tree and snatched the family’s puppy.

Melody Russell says the thieves broke in while she was at work Monday. She came home to find the back door open, 10 presents under the tree gone and Honey, their 12-week-old Shih Tzu, missing.

Tampa Police are investigating the case — and they also provided a happy ending.

When police dispatchers and Squad 204 heard about the theft, they quickly chipped in to replace the gifts. The squad delivered the gifts in the wee hours of the morning on Christmas Eve, each one signed “From Santa.”