Winter Garden 'Grinch' caught on camera stealing Christmas decorations

People advised to stay vigilant, anchor down decor

By Jennifer Ortega - Reporter

WINTER GARDEN, Fla. - Holiday decorations have been disappearing from front yards in Winter Garden.

A homeowner said Thursday that he caught the so-called “Grinch” on camera. But the man moved quickly, and hasn’t been caught yet.

"I can't believe that somebody would do this in our neighborhood,” Anthony Devescovi said. “Like, really? Like, seriously, somebody just took a $40 projector.”

Surveillance video showed the moment when a truck pulled up and a man hopped out. He scrambled to the front of a house, where he started unplugging the Christmas light projector and pulling it out of the ground. In a matter of seconds, he scooped it up, got back in the truck and drove off. 

"He did it pretty quickly,” Devescovi said. “It almost looks like he planned it out -- (like) he staked it out or something.”

Devescovi said he and his six children were excited to decorate their Winter Garden home this holiday season. The projector was one of the items they picked out together. 

"They really love Christmas (and) putting the decorations up,” Devescovi said. “I was excited about it, and now for this to (have) happened, it takes some of the excitement away.”

Devescovi just wants to understand why someone would be so cruel to his children.

"I want to ask him why he did this, because it makes no sense why he would do something like that when he could probably afford it himself,” Devescovi said.

He's not the only one dealing with a thief. In Volusia County, six light projectors were reported stolen this week in Deltona.

Deputies said the best way to keep your decorations safe is to anchor them down, put up surveillance and stay vigilant.

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