London, Nov. 25: A young mother whose house was burgled has posted an open letter to the criminal, saying the coward deserves sadness, misfortune and dark days for causing heartache.
Angie Sowton, 33, was so angry and upset when her home was broken into and prized possessions stolen that she felt she had to somehow get across her hurt to the perpetrator.
She came up with the idea of handwriting almost a dozen personal notes to the coward and attaching them to the lampposts along her street.
The former schoolteacher, who has two children aged three and one, hopes that the heartfelt messages will elicit a pang of remorse and guilt in the criminal — and at least make the person think twice before doing it again.
The letters, addressed to the coward who burgled our home, heaps shame on the perpetrator but then ends in defiance.
The few pounds you make from stealing ours and our childrens hard earned, beloved and sentimental possessions will bring you sadness, misfortune and the dark days you so rightly deserve, she wrote.
The love and sentiments attached to the items you took, you will never understand. However our love and our children will bring us to terms with what you have done to our family.
You saw the photographs of our childrens innocent faces and were still able to steal from them. We will never understand the kind of person that makes you. This is our good fortune and the cross you have to bear.
The letter, which is signed from a hardworking family, has struck a chord with neighbours in south London and has been picked by the Internet.
The burglary happened last week when Sowton and her daughters Olivia and Amy were out of the house visiting an art gallery.
When her husband Chris, 34, an English lecturer, came back home he noticed the kitchen window had been smashed in and the house ransacked.
The burglar had made off with two Christening necklaces given to the children, a gift of a ring given to Sowton by her in-laws as well as an iPod and laptop containing precious family photos.
Even though the actual value of the goods stolen was not high and the family is insured, Sowton felt heartbroken that precious heirlooms and gifts had been taken.
She said: It was a bit of therapy for myself and a hope that it might evoke a pang of guilt in them.
We havent got lots of money. All our money goes to pay the mortgage and most of the things that have gone were gifts. They meant an awful lot to us and they can never be replaced.
She said she realised it may not have any effect but it was cathartic for her.
I felt so much better for doing it. I wanted the burglar to see it and I wanted other people to know that this is happening in the area, she said.