Grinch steals gifts from under Christmas tree in Palmdale home

PALMDALE, Calif. (KABC) -- The holidays were ruined for some Palmdale residents after a real-life Grinch broke into their home and took several items - including gifts from under the Christmas tree.

"He's messing with Christmas, the Christmas spirit. You know, I'm waiting to give those gifts, and he just comes and takes them. That's what bothered me the most," said Eddie Rodriguez.

The thief broke into the Palmdale apartment early Christmas Eve.

"It kills your spirits. It's like, really? The day before?" said Blanca Flores.

The suspect busted through the front door, then pulled out his backpack to fill it with whatever he could find - seemingly unaware that he was being caught red-handed right on camera.

"I think maybe he thought it was a web cam or something, but I mean, it's right there. It's in his face. He kneels down right in front of it, so that's very confusing to me. I mean, it's not like I'm trying to hide it," Rodriguez said.

The footage shows the suspect loading up the couple's PlayStation 4 and all the games. He also grabs a purse before turning toward the tree.

The couple said they don't care about the belongings they lost - it's the loss of the presents that upsets them the most.

"There were gifts that were going to family. So it's like oh dang, you're taking personal things, at this point, that we were going to give to somebody else," Flores said.

Rodriguez said the suspect also broke into his neighbor's home, again busting in the front door.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is now investigating - armed with the candid video.

"I hope they catch this guy, because weren't the only ones. We had that happen to our neighbors, so I'm sure there's plenty more people he went and did that to, and it sucks especially around the time that it is. It's just a bad time," Flores said.

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