Stolen SUV returned to Portsmouth woman — but precious items inside still missing

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A Portsmouth woman who lost precious items when her SUV was stolen last week now has her car back.

“I was very excited,” said Julia Cooke. “I was very excited to see what was still in it.”

The car might be back, but the same can’t be said for her stuff.

Tuesday morning, Cooke got the phone call she was desperately waiting for.

“When I picked up the phone somebody said they were an officer with Portsmouth and they located my Durango,” Cooke said.

The Durango was stolen from Cooke’s driveway 10 miles away from where it was found on Farragut Street in the Cradock area of Portsmouth. Cooke wasn’t expecting so much damage to be done.

“People who steal your things don’t tend to take care of them, but I was still very surprised when I saw the front bumper gone,” Cooke said.

The SUV was left trashed. Cooke’s laptop, iPod and three child car seats are all gone. 

“Stealing from children is pathetic,” Cooke added.

Her wallet, which held pictures of her late brother, is also gone. The thieves also took a cross off the rearview mirror, which was given to Cooke at her brother’s funeral.

“I was really hopeful to get it back,”Cooke said. “I was hopeful even if they did just leave it to get rid of it that maybe they would have seen the story and left the things that were important to me, because they really aren’t worth anything to other people,” she said.

Portsmouth Police dusted for fingerprints and searched the SUV in hopes of getting a lead.  

“They could have taken my cash and cards, but they could have just left everything else, but they didn’t,” Cooke added.

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