Dreams shat­tered

North Harbour News - - FRONT PAGE - By MICHELE ONG

THIEVES who stole Christ­mas from Michelle Miller also took with them her fam­ily’s dream of own­ing their own prop­erty.

Ms Miller fea­tured in the Rod­ney Times’ Novem­ber 18 is­sue about her as­pi­ra­tion to see a spe­cial needs school es­tab­lished in the area for one of her two sons and other chil­dren.

‘ ‘ Our dream of sav­ing enough money to put a de­posit on a house has been stolen, as we’ve used the money to pay for re­plac­ing the bro­ken fur­ni­ture,’’ the Arkles Bay res­i­dent says.

Also gone are their dreams of hol­i­day­ing in Dis­ney­land next year.

A vacation in Taupo with her sons was cut short when they re­ceived a call say­ing their home had been bro­ken into.

‘‘Our neigh­bour who comes around each evening to feed our cats rang my mum when she saw the win­dows were open, and the cats in­side the house,’’ Ms Miller says.

The fam­ily re­turned home early New Year’s eve to a home where ‘ ‘ draw­ers and cab­i­nets were smashed, shelves pulled out of wardrobes, beds bro­ken and couches ripped,’’ she says.

It took them about three days to clear up the mess.

She be­lieves about $30,000 worth of per­sonal be­long­ings have been stolen.

That in­cludes two Xbox con­soles, which took her a ‘‘good year’’ to save for, two tele­vi­sion sets, lap­tops, her sons’ new clothes, money and a gold bracelet Ms Miller re­ceived from her grand­mother.

‘‘Raf­fle money which was to be used to fundraise for the spe­cial needs school was also taken. The last count I did, it was about $400. But more money came in, so I think it added up to $700 in to­tal,’’ she says.

‘‘I’ve saved up so hard to buy these things for my boys. I don’t care about the money but the per­son who stole all the items has also taken away what’s theirs.

‘ ‘ There’s noth­ing for the boys to do now over their hol­i­day pe­riod but stare at a blank wall,’’ she says.

Ms Miller says the fam­ily has not been cop­ing well.

‘‘We’ve not been sleep­ing prop­erly ei­ther. We’ve been hear­ing noises out­side our house and we all slept in the lounge,’’ she says.

The in­ci­dent has been re­ported to po­lice and Ms Miller has taken out house and con­tents in­surance.

‘‘I should’ve taken it out be­fore I went on vacation. I did say I would do it, but I ig­nored my con­science – and this hap­pened,’’ she says.

Her neigh­bours have of­fered sup­port, and Ms Miller is grate­ful to foren­sic po­lice who bought the fam­ily pizza and chips for din­ner.

‘‘The of­fi­cer was so lovely. And we were blessed to have a meal that night. She even of­fered us use of a TV.’’

Ms Miller hopes the goods and money will be re­turned.

Po­lice say in­ves­ti­ga­tions are con­tin­u­ing.

All gone: Arkles Bay res­i­dent Michelle Miller’s vacation was cut short when thieves broke into her home and fled with $30,000 worth of per­sonal be­long­ings.

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