The family of a five-year-old Delaware boy were left devastated after two ‘porch pirates’ stole his replica WWE pro wrestling championship belts.
Young Timmy Vick struggles with autism and is currently awaiting surgery to remove a brain tumour. The two belts provided a powerful sense of comfort to the little boy, who even went to sleep with them at his side.
Timmy was left heartbroken after two thieves stole the replica belts from boxes on the family’s porch, items which had been due to be specially decorated for him by wrestling belt artist Sergio Moriera.
Did you see the story last night about Timmy & his stolen replica WWE championship belts?
GOOD NEWS – suspects did the right thing & returned the belts this morning
BAD NEWS – our deputies at @Edgewood_PD need your help to id the suspects
— Pierce Co Sheriff (@PierceSheriff) June 26, 2019
Timmy’s father, Tim Sr., wanted to spruce up the belts as a special treat for his son, who was facing a number of challenges.
Moriera, who refurbishes replica belts with materials such as metal, leather, cubic zirconia, offered to embellish Timmy’s belts free of charge.
Speaking with Kiro 7:
The belts are heavier and thicker, so it feels like the real thing, (Timmy’s) father doesn’t make a lot of money.
But he wanted to give his son an amazing gift, and I told him I would do everything for free. I said, ‘Just ship it over and I’ll do everything you want on the belt, and he’ll have the belt of a lifetime.’
The parcel containing Timmy’s belts was delivered to Moriera’s home in Edgewood, Washington, on Monday June 24.
Moriera had been at a WWE Raw show, when an app alerted him that two women and a driver had stolen the the parcel from his front porch.
Determined to ensure the belts were safely returned to their rightful owner, Moriera did everything in his power to raise awareness about the incident.
Speaking about the thieves with Kiro 7, Moriera stressed how important the belts were to Timmy:
I want them to know they took hope from a five-year-old boy who is looking forward to that item coming back to him.
You stole that from him. You broke a child’s heart.
Need a shot of righteous redemption, forgiveness and kindness? Give us two minutes at 11:08 on @KIRO7Seattle. Hear the heartfelt apology from a parent who returned something she unwittingly stole from a disabled child. Sometimes shame is far worse than jail. pic.twitter.com/9I5cpiJP4u
— Gary Horcher (@GaryKIRO7) June 27, 2019
Edgewood Police Department also posted CCTV footage of the theft on Facebook, in the hope the thieves would be identified and the belts retrieved. Following a public outcry, the thieves returned Timmy’s belts to Moriera’s home to return alongside a four-page apology letter.
In the letter, which was obtained by Yahoo Lifestyle, the thieves explained they were homeless and addicted to drugs. They had been looking to make some money by stealing the belts, but were left feeling ‘ashamed’ after seeing news reports about the theft.
According to Yahoo Lifestyle, the letter read:
We are so sorry for taking your stuff. Never in a million years would I have expected I would have stolen from a sick five year old, I have a 6 year old myself and am ashamed of what I did.
The letter continued:
We never wanted to steal a child’s hope.
After seeing ourselves looking like low lives on the news, we have both decided to get clean and sober.
Moriera told Yahoo Lifestyle the women cried and appeared genuinely sorry when returning the package. He reportedly gave them a hug and informed them he wouldn’t be pressing charges.
It’s hoped Timmy will be reunited with his – newly decorated – beloved belts by next week.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.