Hatfield widow distraught as thieves steal dead daughter, husband and mother’s jewellery

PUBLISHED: 17:00 06 May 2013

Elaine Burnham, by the window used to gain entry to her house

Elaine Burnham, by the window used to gain entry to her house


THIEVES broke into a Hatfield widow’s home and stole gold and silver jewellery belonging to her dead daughter and husband.

Elaine Burnham, of The Downs, Hatfield, returned home to find that her bungalow had been burgled and jewellery belonging to her dead daughter, husband and mother had been taken.

The robbers had also taken cash.

They broke in through the conservatory.

The 62-year-old is now hoping someone will come forward with information about the crime.

She told the WHT: “Everything they took was from dead relatives. I’ve lost so many memories.

“They even took my wedding and engagement rings.”

The incident happened between 11.50am and 3.10pm on Tuesday, April 16, when Mrs Burnham was out.

She came back to find her house in complete disarray; her sitting room fire place had been wrenched out of the wall and the carpets pulled up.

The thieves had also gone through her draws and cupboards and smashed her children’s piggy banks taking the money inside.

“The police said it was not a normal burglary; the robbers just took gold and silver but left everything electrical behind,” she said.

“They said they must have been looking for something specific - but I don’t have anything for them to take.”

Mrs Burnham, who is retired, said she had only started to go through the items that morning, after storing them for years in the loft, not being able to bring herself to look at the possessions.

She is particularly saddened by the loss of a silver owl money box.

“It used to be my mother’s and it’s the only thing I have of hers,” she said.

“It wasn’t worth much but it had so much sentimental value.”

The only thing the thieves left was an earring, part of a pair that Elaine’s daughter Tracey was going to wear to her mothers wedding in 2005.

Sadly she passed away the day before. “There’s only this left,” she said.

Mrs Burnham said that after the incident she did not feel safe in her own home.

“I feel anxious. It’s the thought that someone else has been in there,” she said.

Police said a 38-year-old man from Potters Bar had been arrested in connection with the burglary and is now on bail.

He is due to return to Hatfield Police Station later this month.

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