STILLWATER, Okla. (KFOR) – A week into the new year, Christmas crime is still being reported, most recently in Stillwater where a Baby Jesus was stolen from a home known for its elaborate holiday displays.
"That's the world we live in," said Eva Turner.
She and her husband Chuck have spent thousands of dollars and many hours on a dazzling Christmas light display that has been amassing decorations for almost a decade.
"I started on October first to have it done by Thanksgiving weekend," Chuck said.
There are 80,000 lights in all and they blink in time with music.
It started as a family tradition but has grown to reach thousands around Stillwater and surrounding areas.
"This year was the largest year, and I think at one time we saw a little over 20 cars lined up and down 4th Street in and around the cul-de-sac," Eva said. "You go sneak outside and listen, and the kids are just hootin' and hollerin', and people are clapping. It’s nice."
But after Christmas and in its final days of the year, the Turners discovered something big was missing.
The Baby Jesus had been plucked from the manger.
So they checked the surveillance cameras and spotted a pickup truck, and someone they believe was in the act of taking it.
"Parked in front of our neighbor's house, then ran across the street to the nativity scene and all they took was a little Baby Jesus," Chuck said.
Over the past few years, it's not the first time they've been hit.
"We have a bunch of these light up candy canes," ones that went missing, according to Chuck. So they watched the surveillance video and saw the culprits. "They coasted down the street and the passenger rolled his window down, and jerked up every one of them, and took off."
The person who did it and the two in the car with him were caught by police within the hour.
Another time, Chuck caught the thief in the act.
"I had a green laser pointer in my truck so I rolled the window down and said, 'Freeze or I'll shoot!,' and he turned around and saw that laser on him, and it scared him so bad that he dropped them both and then took off running," Chuck said.
That person called the police on Chuck, accusing him of threatening him with a weapon for no reason, but when police arrived, Chuck showed them the surveillance video, and it was the thief who was arrested.
The Turners said people have even been low enough as to simply cut the wires and render some of their display useless.
"It hurts," Chuck said, "but it's not going to run me off."
The two did file a police report a week after the Baby Jesus was stolen since it hasn't been returned.
Because someone was home at the time, it could result in a felony burglary charge, however they really only want to see it brought back.