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‘My heart is broken’: Car thieves steal money meant for woman’s dying brother’s funeral

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Suspected car thieves in Seattle's Mount Baker neighborhood were photographed by a video surveillance camera.

Suspected car thieves in Seattle’s Mount Baker neighborhood were photographed by a video surveillance camera.

SEATTLE — In broad daylight, a thief smashed his way into a car parked in Seattle’s Mount Baker neighborhood and ran off with Araceli Jaime’s purse.

“My heart is broken,” Jaime, who works as a nanny in the neighborhood, said Thursday.

Two men got away with $1,200 of Jaime’s hard-earned money. The nanny had just taken the money out of the bank to send to her dying brother in Mexico.

“My brother is so sick, he’s in the hospital” and not expected to live, Jaime said

The heartless car break-in enrages Araceli’s employer, Kate Jiggins.

“She’s away from her family, from her house, working to make money for her family, and these guys are walking down the street having a snack, bashing in people’s windows. You can tell right now I am getting hot in the collar,” Jiggins said.

Jiggins added that Mount Baker is seeing property crimes skyrocketing.

“We get emails: My car was broken into last night, my bikes were stolen last night, my garage was broken into last night. It’s a daily occurrence,” Jiggins said.

That’s why she decided to invest in a quality security camera. And it came in handy.

The video footage shows the thieves canvassed her neighborhood and 34th Avenue South in a vehicle that looks similar to a utility truck so they could blend in. The white box truck even had orange cones on it.

Tired of the crime, Jiggins isn’t sitting back anymore.

“We are relying on each other -- keep an eye out for these people and bring them to the attention of the police. If you see them, call 911,” Jiggins said.

Jaime is grateful she has a supportive boss because right now life is tough for the nanny.

“I don’t pay any money for myself, (for) clothes or nothing,” Jaime said.

Jiggins has set up a Go Fund Me account for anyone who wishes to donate to Jaime so she can help pay for her brother's funeral. Click here to go to the site.

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12 comments

  • Frank D.

    If I lived in that area I would start arming myself. We had that problem when I lived in Az. but my neighbor put it to a stop real quick. He caught a guy in his garage and shot him…didn’t kll him but we had no trouble in our neighborhood after that.

  • Diane

    Couldn’t help but notice, the video shows the “nanny” getting out of the car with a clearly visible “DISABLED” pass hanging from the rear view mirror. She does not appear to be disabled. Explanation?????

    • Just Sayin'

      i can’t watch the video you speak of but disability tags are for different reasons not all are always a physical impairment that you can spot easily. Some are temporary for a short term injury or illness while others aren’t. Also, my mom has one that can be transferred to what ever vehicle she’s riding in, not just driving, so when ever she’s with me, she uses it in my car. Don’t be so quick to judge.

    • Kate Jiggins

      Thanks, Just Sayin’. The tag is legitimate, and frankly, that has absolutely nothing to do with what happened anyhow.

  • "peety"

    you left 1200 in cash in your car and you want sympathy? You are an IDIOT! You deserve to be robbed.

    People need to stop being victims. Secure your valuables.

    • Kate Jiggins

      She was stressed and distracted because her brother was dying. I hope that one day you are in a similar position and people are kinder to you than you are to others.

    • "peety"

      don’t be victim, take responsibility. I feel sorry for her, but she has no one to blame but herself. When will people learn?

  • Daniel Shatzer

    Admit that leaving that amount of cash was not a good idea, but probably due to the circumstances she was going through a rough moment. Sorry for what happened and hope these thieves get what they deserve

  • Adm

    If you knew car prowling was a huge problem, enough to video tape it, why would you leave a purse with $1200 in your car?!

  • Kate Jiggins

    First, if you pay attention, it’s not my car. It was our nanny’s car. She lives in West Seattle and got into the habit of leaving her purse in her car. She has never had a problem before, and made the error of leaving her bag in her car in our “nice” neighborhood, partly out of habit, and partly because she was stressed and distracted because her brother was dying. Did she make a mistake? Yes. Calling her names? Rude and uncalled for. That’s called victim blaming. Leaving your purse or anything else in your car does not entitle thieves to break in, the same as wearing a short skirt and drinking does not entitle a man to rape you. Shameful.

    Second, perhaps demanding action from the police is a fruitless effort, but you know what wasn’t? Going to the media. We have a detective assigned to the case and thanks to someone calling my house after seeing the news story now know the name and address of the criminal.

    Keep demanding justice. Sitting back and complaining in a comment on a news story will get you nothing but bitter.

    Thank you to those of you who posted sympathetic and/or understanding remarks. The rest of you should find a hobby.