SANTA FE — Police said two people posing as workers hired to remove tree limbs from power lines, instead stole a 77-year-old widow’s $30,000 collection of gold coins.

The homeowner told police that she was talking with a woman claiming to be on site to cut the tree limbs when an unknown accomplice went into the house and took a large box and safe. The box and safe held a 25-year collection of gold and silver coins that belonged to the woman’s late husband. 

The collection included proof sets from the 1990s and Krugerrand coins. 

“I was very upset, and when I found out I was hysterical,” homeowner Elaine Harris said. “I can’t believe they got away with anything. It’s so heavy.”

The theft happened at about 2 p.m. on Tuesday in the 2900 block of Avenue L, but Harris didn’t notice the coins were missing until Wednesday, she said.

“(The thief) went through all my closets,” Harris said. 

Harris described the first suspect as a 20-year-old Hispanic woman wearing jeans and a dark top and dark hair that was pulled back.

She said she was in the garage talking to the woman. 

“She said she was going to get me some brochures to sign but never did,” Harris said. “They just got into the car and left.”

Police did not have a detailed description of the second person involved, but know it’s a man, Capt. Wayne Kessler said.

The suspects drove off in a small maroon car that Harris described as “old and dirty.”The theft comes about a week after burglars broke into a Santa Fe trailer home of a 65-year-old grocery store sacker and stole his $1,500 collection of quarters.

No arrests have been made in that case either, but after The Daily News reported on the crime, the community outpouring has been tremendous Ricki “Shorty” Locke said. So far he has been given $1,800 from people who wanted to help him after the theft.

Anyone with information on the theft should call Santa Fe police at 409-925-2000.


(4) comments

Lars Faltskog

How terrible. That being said, people ought not keep valuables like classic coins or thousands of quarters in a home.

Also, raising $ and stuffing it into an underwear drawer isn't the most prudent thing to do either, but it seems as though folks lose their common sense with these kinds of things. Best thing to do is take prized coins/jewelry and etcetera to a bank for safe bank vault keeping. Then, "will" it to a loved one with stipulation that he/she will do the same.

Marine One

An American citizen should be able to feel safe and secure in their own home - period. The problem with that statement is those days are gone, and far too many home invasions, burgularies and kidnappings go by without being punished to the max.
It's gut-wrenching when an American tries to defend his life and property from being stolen away from him, then ends up getting sued or arrested for doing such.

Island Bred

It's pretty obvious these 2 people are vulnerable based on throwing their address out there, their ages, their daily routines, their lifestyles.

I might be over sensitive but IF I were elderly, alone, had a set schedule I wouldn't want it published to sell a story.

I think the point that coin burglaries are apparently going around and you need to be aware could of been diseminated without fronting out elderly folks who could very easily be another target for some opportunist that wants to see if anything is left.

Course SOMEONE knew the coin collections were there - I will bet that the folks doing this either know the 2 victims OR the 2 victims give out too much information to just anyone........

Sad stories - both of them.

Lars Faltskog

I am almost always in the camp that says these things happen because someone privy to the everyday lives of these folks knew about it. And upon knowing about it, they acted in a vile manner accordingly.

I simply don't think it is wise to keep prized old coins or a multi-thousand dollar collection of quarters, show your family and friends around, then expect these collections to remain there without theft.

I've also heard how unscrupulous folks such these fake "tree trimmers" hook, line, and sinker their potential "customers". If anyone knocks on your front door....if you answer the front door, go LOCK the BACK door before you answer the front door.

If the degenerate visitors come at you in your garage, make sure your front and back doors are locked before engaging in a conversation with them. No matter how old we are, we don't have to be a victim - but we sure can be smart...and put valuables in a bank vault - not under the house and not stored in the master bedroom's top shelf in the closet.

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