A heartbreaking series of crimes are happening in Richland. Thieves are stealing from grave sites.
RICHLAND, WA - A heartbreaking series of crimes are happening in Richland. Thieves are stealing from grave sites.
For one woman, it's the kind of heartbreak few will understand: having to bury your own child. That's what Cheryl Johnson deals with every day. But now, thieves are hurting her even more. She leaves trinkets and toys for her son Kyler and they disappear.
"Worst of all, whoever did this had to look at my son's face while they took these things off of it," said Johnson.
Kyler was just seven years old when his family buried him at Sunset Memorial Gardens. In the past few months, coins, an antique Mother of Mary statue, even a solar light have disappeared from his resting place.
"It's hard to sleep at night wondering if my son's stuff will be taken off his grave or anything," said Johnson.
It's part of her grieving process to visit Kyler and leave him things so he's not alone.
"Each one of these things that are on here has a special meaning and you're just robbing, you're just taking it. I just want my son to be able to rest and be at peace," said Cheryl.
The cemetery is open 24-7 which is good for family and friends but makes it difficult to catch the culprits.
"I hope by doing this, that other families will come forward that are buried here to get their names added on and maybe we can all work together and put a stop to this because something has to be done. This is a resting place," said Johnson.
Several other families have come forward and said this same thing has happened to them.
Richland Police say if your loved one's grave is being picked you should contact officers and report it.