Bur­glar caught in the act

Central Otago Mirror - - CENTRAL NEWS - By CHE BAKER

Vic­tims of a Clyde cat-bur­glar have been re­united with their stolen goods af­ter the fe­line made head­lines last week when his steal­ing fetish was re­ported to the po­lice. Sheree Lines said her 2-year-old cat, Skitz, had a habit of steal­ing items and bring­ing them home. It started with sticks and leaves but soon Skitz ad­vanced to bring­ing home ev­ery­thing from news­pa­pers to dresses, to shoes and toys. Teddy bears and any­thing ‘‘pretty or sparkly’’ of­ten caught Skitz’s eye but the strangest thing he had ever brought home was a news­pa­per from the 1920s. ‘‘I have ab­so­lutely no idea where he got it from,’’ she said. Lock­ing Skitz in­side at night-time did not stop his of­fend­ing. It just meant he would steal in day­light hours. Her fa­ther Bob said, ‘‘The amount of items Skitz has col­lected is em­bar­rass­ing. We didn’t know what to do with it.’’ A search of the in­ter­net found Skitz’s steal­ing fetish was not un­com­mon, but there was also not much that could be done to stop it. The only op­tion was to have Skitz hyp­no­tised. The light-pawed steal­ing came to light last week when one of Skitz’s vic­tims con­tacted po­lice with con­cerns that some­one was break­ing into her house and steal­ing clothes – but a few days later, she caught Skitz in the act. Other peo­ple who read about Skitz in The South­land Times last week have been in con­tact with the fam­ily to pick some of their items.

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Cat-bur­glar: Sheree Lines with her cat Skitz and some of the items he has dragged to her par­ents’ house in Clyde dur­ing the past five months. Photo: CHE BAKER

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