Thieves hit Arizona farm where it hurts just before Halloween, grab hundreds of pumpkins

BUCKEYE, Ariz. -- Someone stole hundreds of pumpkins from a farm’s pumpkin patch in the western Phoenix suburb of Buckeye, days before the busiest weekend of the year, reports CBS Phoenix affiliate KPHO-TV.

“These were volleyball-sized and larger, and our biggest carving pumpkins,” Kelly Stecker said while walking in the now empty field at Rocker 7 Farm Patch.

Rows of small pumpkins, given to kids on school trips, were untouched, but thieves took the 300 largest, priciest pumpkins.

“We’re looking at a $3,000 loss,” Stecker estimated.

Wednesday night, owners secured a new shipment of pumpkins, which they expect to arrive before the coming weekend.

Still, they hope to get answers about who took their crop, and why.

“You can’t help but feel violated. Someone came on the property without permission,” Stecker said.

While the farm is gated, dirt farm roads crisscross the rural Buckeye area, and thieves would be able to drive through other farms to get to the pumpkin patch.

Stecker says the thieves must have driven a large truck onto the property, which is not lit at night.

“We’re out in the country. The closest light is half a mile that way,” she said.

Buckeye police officers have been called to investigate.