Family left upset after theft from graveside of three-year-old in Milton Keynes
A callous thief who plundered the grave of a young boy in a crematorium and stole a model dinosaur placed by his grieving relatives, is being sought by police.
Toddler Jamie Matyasek tragically died three years ago and, after a funeral, his remains were buried at the cemetery in his home town.
The dinosaur, thought to have been one of the child's favourite possessions, was found to have been stolen from the graveside when his mother Linda Holliday visited Crownhill Crematorium in Milton Keynes, Bucks. She reported the theft to the police.
Friends and strangers who heard about the unpleasant theft offered to raise money to buy a replacement but Linda said in a social network posting that the shop where she bought the dinosaur no longer stocked them.
An inquest was held into Jamie's death by the Milton Keynes Coroner who recorded a verdict of death from natural causes.
A spokesman for Thames Valley Police said that officers were trying to track down the thief.
"This dinosaur was stolen from a child's grave in Crownhill Crematorium, Milton Keynes," said the spokesman.
"Please help us identify the offenders and return the dinosaur. The graveside theft, which occurred between 9pm on Thursday November 15 and 5.30pm on Friday November 16, has been incredibly upsetting for the family.
"Officers are appealing for anyone who has any information to get in touch using our online form or by calling 101 using the reference number: 43180351352."
Upset social media users posted messages sympathising with Jamie's family.
One man wrote: "This is so sad, as the pond-dwelling scum that took this will never own up. Would the family like a replacement? I know it won’t be the same but everyone who is upset by this could put Â£1 (whatever they can afford) into a crowdfund or just giving equivalent to help? Thames Valley Police - is this something that could be done (if the family would like)? It is almost Christmas."
Jamie's mother replied to the posting saying: "Hi Richard, I am the mother of the little boy whose grave this was stolen from. This is such a kind gesture. Unfortunately the shop we got the dinosaur from don’t sell them anymore and they’ve even kindly checked all their stores and there just aren’t any around anymore. Thank you for your kind thoughts x"