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Christmas Vandals Target Light Displays Across Sacramento

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) - Vandals around Sacramento are targeting Christmas light displays.

Diane Paulsen's one Christmas wish to shine a light for her Elmhurst neighbors.

"I just wanted to give people hope," explained Paulsen. "I had a sign there that said 'Peace on Earth', and I could not imagine why someone would take it," she said.

Instead, her home looks dim after someone pulled the plug on her holiday spirit. Theives stole part of her sign, including the stars, ripping down lights and attempting to take the entire lawn piece that Paulsen ordered months in advance because of its message.

"It's always been a wish of mine, not only at Christmas but in my prayers all the time that people with hate in their mind could make a shift for the positive," she said.

Paulsen took the rest of her lights down, fearing she would become a target again. Her house is not the only one that's been hit.

In Land Park, Marna Salazar explained a group of teens caused more than $1,000 in damage, ravaging the light display she's put on for 45 years.

"Anger, I was very angry," said Salazar. "I heard some noise, so I looked out the window and saw some darling young men stomping on all my decorations," she said.

That anger quickly turned to joy after hundreds of people offered their support.

"The outpouring for this was unbelievable, I had people stopping by I didn't even know -- trying to give me money, trying to give me stuff," said Salazar.

A home in East Sacramento caught more culprits on camera. Video shows two people rip lights from the front lawn and steal some before taking off.

"I just don't understand destroying things to destroy it or steal Christmas lights from someone's yard," explained homeowner, Christ August.

Despite a series of scrooge-like behavior, homeowners aren't letting a Grinch or two steal their Christmas.

"I will never stop, this (the display) was up, back up in 24 hours," explained Salazar.

Paulsen who took down her display this year said she is planning a bigger,

"It's just going to be brighter and fancier," explained Paulsen. "I should've put it back up again. I didn't want them to win but I decided that I'm going to do it even nicer and better next year and have a little theft device on it," she said.

Police are investigating the vandalism in Land Park but do not believe it's connected to any of the other vandalism.

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