ELKHART COUNTY – People say it's a new low: thieves stealing from children.
Police said someone took donation containers for the Children's Miracle Network from three Wal-Mart stores in Elkhart County: on County Road 6, US 33 South of Goshen and on Old US 20 in Osceola.
Customers are shocked and angry.
"I don't know what else to say, it’s unbelievable," said Mike Freed, a Wal-Mart customer from Elkhart County.
Here's what the containers look like: they're fairly big, about three feet tall and clear with a yellow rim.
Police are asking for your help to find the men that might have 3 of those lying around in their car or home.
"That is a new low,” said Brittnie Vullnier, a Wal-Mart Customer from Elkhart County.
"People actually stealing that? That’s scum," said Jodie Hodges, another customer.
Police say the two white, male suspects pull up to the doors of Wal-Mart in a car. One gets out, takes the container of money and then they both drive off.
"It's absolutely unbelievable that people would steal those things from here," Freed said.
The car police are looking for is a two-door brown Chrysler, possibly a Sebring, with a partial Michigan plate of CHY.
"That's ridiculous, that's ridiculous. I understand people being desperate, but there's people that need that money far more than whoever is ripping it off," Hodges said.
The Children's Miracle Network says they're saddened by these thefts – they sent us this statement:
"We are saddened by the recent thefts of Children's Miracle Network Hospitals coin canisters. When these donations are made, the funds stay in the community, helping local kids and their families. The hospital can then use the donations however they're needed most and in a variety of ways — anything from funding new, life-saving equipment, research, charitable care and child-life services."
"We had a kid that was sick too,” said Jeff Hagan a Wal-Mart customer from Elkhart. “Everybody is having hard times but when you take it away from the children it’s even worse."
Even though it's no excuse, some customers say Wal-Mart needs to re-think where they place donation baskets. At this specific store, customers say it's right near the entrance.
"Why would they sit stuff there?” said Freed. “It’s easy access as people walk out - bad idea, money especially."
Wal-Mart said they place donation containers there because it draws the most traffic flow on a daily basis.
These local donations go to Riley Children's Hospital – the money is used wherever it's needed the most: from funding life-saving equipment, to research, charitable care and child-life services.
Anyone with information should call Elkhart County police at 574-891-2356.