Oklahoma City Police arrested a man accused of stealing from the dead.
Police arrested David Pruner, 34, inside the Budget Inn Motel - after both he, his car, and unique Indian Nation's license plate were spotted at the Chapel Hill Cemetery.
The person who reported him to police stated Pruner was hanging around the graves and that he saw him take three vases with him. The police report states inside the green Jaguar they found dirt, a shovel, and fake flowers appeared to have been taken graveside vases.
Cleveland County Sheriff's Office also received reports that several vases are missing from both children's and veteran's graves at the Sunset Memorial Park in Norman.
“It takes a very cold heartless person to steal a copper vase from a dead child's grave,” said Meghan McCormick with the Cleveland County Sheriff's Office.
Oklahoma City Police collected all these vases at a local Oklahoma City recycling plant. They claimed Pruner had dropped off several vases to them in the past.
“He did come in with a letter from the cemetery stating he had the permission to sell these vases,” said Marty Stupka with Oklahoma City police.
Police believe it is a fraudulent letter. Now they need to determine what to do with all these sacred items. Thieves only get a few dollars for the precious metals out of each vase, but it costs families hundreds of dollars to replace.
John Davenport is with Dignity Memorial Funeral Homes and he says they have had several of these vases taken from several of their cemeteries in just the past week alone.
“And they'll just snip this chain and take this and leave everything else there,” said Davenport.
“This is a despicable crime. So we are asking people to be vigilant when they are out-especially if they see a vehicle out there - because it's a public place.”
If you have any information about these thefts, or need to report one yourself contact either the Oklahoma City Police Department or the Cleveland County Sheriff's office.
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