Everything about Coral Sirup’s wedding ring and band has special meaning.
There’s the diamond from Vegas, where her husband proposed to her. There are the sapphires representing the month in which they got married and her husband’s birth month. There are Polar Bear Diamonds from the Northwest Territories where her uncle worked, and a diamond that belonged to her husband’s father. Between the two rings, there are seven diamonds, representing the seven members of Sirup’s family.
The rings, which were custom-made, combine jewelry from Sirup’s family and from her husband’s family to create two pieces that are incredibly personal.
“My rings are unique; they’re one-of-a-kind,” she said. “Each stone represents something and is something.”
These unique rings that mean so much to Sirup were taken from her home during a break and enter on Friday, Nov. 22, and she’s been distributing posters asking for information about the missing rings and offering a reward for their return ever since.
Sirup says about $10,000 worth of jewelry was stolen from her North Shore Road home near the Duck Pond, but more than anything, it’s her wedding ring and band and a ring that belonged to her grandmother that she would love to have back.
Sirup had just gotten her wedding rings cleaned, and they were sitting in her jewelry box at the time of the break-in. She noticed they were missing Friday night when she came home and went to put them back on.
Sirup believes the thief(s) must have jimmied the back door to get into their home, which was locked, while they were away.
“I don’t feel safe in my house by myself; I can’t sleep,” she said. “I’ve never been through something like this, and it’s just terrifying. We’ve stepped up the security for all our windows and doors and got people to put in brighter lights.”
Sirup says she knows of four houses in her neighbourhood that have been broken into recently, and she encourages people to make sure they have lights on their property and make sure they lock their doors. She also warns people to be wary of anyone knocking on their door asking to use their phone because she has heard this has been happening in her neighbourhood and could be suspicious.
“I would hate to have this happen to someone else,” she said.
Lake Cowichan RCMP Cpl. Warren Potter confirms that the police have received complaints of someone knocking on doors in this neighbourhood and asking to use residents’ phone.
He also confirmed that there have been four break-ins in the neighbourhood near the Duck Pond in recent weeks.
A residence on North Shore Road was broken into on Friday, Nov. 8, although it wasn’t reported until Nov. 10, and a camera, jewelry and a small amount of cash were taken, according to Potter.
In this incident, the door was unlocked.
A more recent break-in occurred Thursday, Nov. 21, and a door was unlocked in this case as well.
Between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Nov. 21, unknown culprit(s) entered a house near the Duck Pond just off North Shore Road in Lake Cowichan through an unlocked front door and stole two Apple iPads worth about $900, according to a press release from the RCMP.
“Even though the culprit(s) did not cause any damage entering the house in this incident, it is still classified as a Break, Enter and Theft and is an offence under the Criminal Code of Canada,” stated Potter.
Another break-in in this area occurred on Nov. 21, according to Potter.
After these recent incidents, the Lake Cowichan RCMP is encouraging home owners to lock their doors and windows while they are away.
“They don’t need to panic, but they should be concerned and take safety precautions,” said Potter.
Anyone who witnessed any suspicious activity during these recent incidents is asked to call the Lake Cowichan RCMP at 250-749-6668 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
In another part of town, Cathy Jenkins came home on Monday, Nov. 25 after three weeks away to discover a freezer-load of food had been taken.
Jenkins lives on Johel Road, and she has a freezer outside her home that was almost full with food she’d bought for the holidays. She was shocked to find that everything was gone except the bread.
Jenkins thinks the theft may have occurred during the day, as her landlady, who lives upstairs, works during the day, and her neighbour’s dogs would have barked if it had happened in the evening.
Nobody got into the house, and Jenkins didn’t find anything else missing.
“I just felt invaded,” she said. “I’m not going to let it eat me up, but I felt awful when I saw that.”