Yard theft frustrating for Winnipeggers
WINNIPEG -- The weather is heating up, and summer is in full swing.
Many people are using the sunshine as an opportunity to get outside and beautify their backyards, but not all of them are getting a chance to enjoy the fruits of their labours.
Iluminada Reyes loves to plant flowers in her yard. She said it's a stress reliever for her and her husband.
In 2019, she was given the Neighbourhood Beautification Award by the Centennial Community Improvement Association for making her home and yard look beautiful.
But on Sunday, she noticed something was different about her yard.
"I came home last night; the plants were still there," said Reyes.
"When we woke up this morning, 13 pots [were] missing."
She said it wouldn't be easy to steal her flower pots.
"They're big pots. It's not small pots you can just carry around," said Reyes. "They must have a truck or something to carry 13 pots of plants."
Reyes said some of her plants were stolen a few years ago, but she was able to find them.
She isn't the only Winnipegger who had some large items taken from her yard.
Melissa has lived in the Lord Roberts area for five years. On Monday, she experienced theft in her yard for the first time.
"My fire pit used to be right here, and it had been there for a few years, probably," said Melissa. "I'd never really taken it in before, [then] I just went to put out the recycling, and it was gone."
Melissa said her gate was broken at the time, and it wasn't closing properly.
Now she brings everything inside the house when she leaves the yard.
Leila Castro, the founder of 204 Neighbourhood Watch, said yard theft is part of a bigger problem.
"It's a symptom of the safety concern in our city," said Castro. "It should not be something that is put aside."
Castro said it's important to report all incidents to the police so they can keep track of thefts in the area.
She believes watch groups help keep residents safe.
204 Neighbourhood Watch has helped organize other neighbourhood watch groups like Wolseley Watch and St. James Deer Lodge Neighbourhood Watch.
Reyes hasn't reported her stolen flower pots yet and said she doesn't expect to get them back anytime soon.
"Whoever got my plants, I hope you take care of those plants like I did," said Reyes.