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Stealing From The Dead: 250-Pound Bronze Mausoleum Doors Stolen From Delaware County Cemetery

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Matt-Rivers-web-headshot Matt Rivers
Matt Rivers joined CBS 3 and The CW Philly’s Eyewitness News team ...
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By Matt Rivers

DREXEL HILL, Pa., (CBS) – Stealing from the dead — police are searching for suspects who stole bronze doors from a mausoleum in Delaware County.

It happened first over the weekend. Two heavy bronze doors stolen from this mausoleum in Drexel Hill’s Arlington Cemetery.  And just yesterday, it happened again.

“The police were just patrolling through here and they noticed another set of doors missing,” President of Arlington Cemetery Gary Buss said.

The thieves operated the same way both times, prying the doors open and unscrewing them from the inside.

But rather than leave in a car or maybe a truck, the thieves chose to set off on foot, carrying these 500-pound doors through the snow, across the cemetery, eventually ending up here.  Then they took these doors, put them up and over this fence, and got away.

“They went through a lot of effort and they obviously knew what they were doing,” Buss said.

Manager Gary Buss says he thinks the thieves are the same people that stole doors in nearby Holy Cross Cemetery.  Three sets were taken there.  The motive?  Easy money, says Buss, trading metal for cash.  But that’s also how he hopes they’ll get caught.

“These are very unique pieces, they are very easy to recognize.  I can’t imagine what scrap dealer would actually take these doors so I’m really hopeful that we’ll get them back,” Buss said.

Hearing the news for the first time, predictable reactions from cemetery visitors.  We asked Judy what she’d say to the crooks.

“I can’t repeat what I’d say.  I’d say are you sick?  Is there something wrong with you to do something like that?” Judy Gallagher said.

It’s a question Upper Darby Police would like to ask, hoping their investigation leads to an arrest.

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