Florida resident Evie Lafferty says she grabbed what she could and drove with her granddaughters for days to escape the wrath of Hurricane Irma.
“Everything I could [bring]. Birth certificates, social security cards," she recalled Tuesday. "My granddaughter wanted to take all her birthday stuff because she just had a birthday party.”
Lafferty lives just north of St. Petersburg in a flood zone. But now she’s dealing with another nightmare. All the valuables she managed to save during the evacuation were stolen.
"I mean I can’t believe this--what else is going to happen?” she said.
Lafferty’s 2015 Dodge Journey was parked in the driveway next to her sister’s 2014 Ford Escape here in the first block of Cambridge Drive in Oak Brook Saturday.
Her car was unlocked and a spare key had been left inside. Both cars were taken.
"When you think you’re in a safe neighborhood… you’re not,: she said.
Police say they’re investigating numerous similar car thefts and burglaries in the area.
They’re warning residents to lock their vehicles, secure valuables and remove garage door openers from parked cars.
“It’s very scary because it happened in my street and Oak Brook is supposed to be a very quiet and safe neighborhood,” said Oak Brook resident Naveen Mylavarap.
Lafferty says she doesn’t want the car or the valuables back --just her keepsakes.
“Personal stuff, baby pictures, the first baby tooth that she lost was in that stuff," she recalled. "Anything like that that was in there--that’s all that I want back.”