Saskatoon

'They took the most random stuff': Prince Albert family picking up pieces after 'surreal' break and enter

A Prince Albert, Sask., family is trying to make sense of a bizarre break-in that involved a thief with a taste for TVs, jewelry, peanut butter and dish soap.

Thief trashed home, then stole TVs, jewelry and peanut butter

This is not how Sierra Watson wanted to find her bedroom. (Submitted by Sierra Watson)

Sierra Watson says she can understand why a thief would take the flat screen TVs, DVDs and jewelry.

But peanut butter and dish soap?

And the legs from her grandfather's cribbage table?

"They took the most random stuff," said the Prince Albert, Sask., resident.

"They took peanut butter, they took Pam, and the robber himself — he made himself pizza. He took the pizza box out and left the dishes.  And took the dish soap.  So bizarre."

Prince Albert police say it's one of the stranger break-and-enters they've investigated. This in a year when property crimes are already up, from 302 in 2015 to 417 already.

"I would say in most instances it's more in and out, grab items that are opportunistic, if they're sitting there," said Sgt. Travis Willie.

"In my experience, to do these things is extremely rare."

The aftermath of Sierra Watson's bedroom after the break and enter. (Submitted by Sierra Watson)

Neighbour alerted family

The Watsons' world turned upside down with a phone call Monday. Sierra, her mom, Laura, and dad, Paul, were in Victoria visiting a family member with cancer.

A neighbour phoned about their house. He wanted to know whether they were at home, because their front door was open and there was a loud buzzing.

In every single room, they took the time to go through everything — in the closets, dressers, under the bed.- Sierra Watson- Sierra Watson

"So we asked him to go investigate and look inside," Sierra said.

"Obviously, he wouldn't know what's missing from inside the house, so we kind of just asked him: Is there a TV in corner? And he'd be like, 'Nope, there's nothing there.'"

Sierra asked him about the vehicles on the driveway. There should be her one-year-old Mazda G2Xm and a white Ford Escape.

"And he said, 'nope,' there was only one car on the driveway. And my car was gone."

It went from bad to worse to bizarre.

The loud buzzing was from the smoke detector, set off because someone had lit all of the candles in the house. The tall ones in the bathroom had scorched the cabinets.

What's left of Sierra Watson's Mazda. (RCMP)

Vehicle missing, then torched

The Watsons continued to get updates after they left Victoria.

Sierra learned from friends that her new car had been spotted around Prince Albert.

"I had a lot of friends tell me that this person was driving like a lunatic around town with my car, driving doughnuts, going over the median, going on the opposite side of the road," she said.

"Next thing you know, the RCMP call us when we were on our way back home. They said they found my car, torched, in the middle of a field. They actually took a picture of my car and sent it to me. It was burnt to a crisp. It was insanely burnt."

This bedroom is the scene of one of the strangest break and enters Prince Albert police say they have ever investigated. (Submitted by Sierra Watson)

The full breadth of what happened didn't become clear until the family made it home and started a room-by-room tally of what was missing.

"In every single room, they took the time to go through everything — in the closets, dressers, under the bed. Sixty per cent of my dad's clothes were gone. None of my clothes were gone," she said.

The Watsons are currently meeting with their insurance adjusters and trying to reassemble their home. While it's physically coming back together, Laura Watson says the family is still dealing with the emotional impact. 

Police are still investigating.

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