COVID-19 in Washington: Links and resources to help you during coronavirus pandemic

Mother in Tacoma says urn with son’s ashes stolen during burglary

Data pix.

TACOMA -- An irreplaceable keepsake was stolen from a Tacoma mother’s home after she said it was burglarized over the weekend. Melissa Carter said an urn containing ashes of her son who died during pregnancy was taken from a jewelry box, along with her diamond engagement ring, bracelet and earrings.

Carter said she left for a weekend visit in Leavenworth Friday afternoon. When she returned Sunday afternoon, Carter said she noticed all the doors in her home were open.

“I peeked into my son’s room and I noticed there was glass shattered everywhere and his window was shattered on the side of the house,” said Carter. “Whoever broke in, broke through my son’s bedroom which is something that any parent is terrified of that.”

Carter filed a report with the Tacoma Police Department Sunday when she realized her home was burglarized.

“I immediately was in shock thinking this isn’t happening. My TV was here, my computer was here, everything was here in the living room,” said Carter.

Carter said the intruder went through her 6-year-old son’s dresser drawers and stole a piggy bank. Down the hall in her room, she said the thief got away with something even more valuable.

“The urn was actually right up here in this box I would keep my keepsakes along with all my jewelry,” said Carter, describing where her jewelry box was containing the urn.

Carter said her son, Jacob, died in the womb from a defect on April 13, 2012 while she was six months pregnant. The urn was inside of a blue velvet pouch when it was snatched from her jewelry box. The mother said the thief has no idea what was taken from her.

“That urn is the only thing that I have of Jacob,” said Carter. "It’s like a comfort to have it. And now just the thought that it’s not here with me is really hard. That’s the only thing I care about getting back. Anything else I don’t care, just the urn.”

Monday, Carter’s boyfriend installed a new surveillance camera because she was concerned about her family’s safety.

“My sense of security is gone. I’m scared to be here, but I’m scared to leave my home too. So, it’s like they robbed me of not only the urn of my son, Jacob, but they’ve taken my security,” said Carter.

Her house is located on a busy street near Interstate 5. Carter mentioned she’s working with the Tacoma Police Department to see if some of the area businesses may have caught something on surveillance cameras.

“I don’t know why my house would be targeted. I suppose maybe that window because it’s the one that’s not visible from the street,” said Carter.

The homeowner said several pieces of diamond jewelry and the warranties were also stolen—things Carter said no longer mattered to her.

“Keep anything else, that’s nothing. That’s materialistic, can be replaced. That’s my son and I would love to have him back,” said Carter.

She said investigators would be collecting more evidence from the home this week. Anyone who may have seen or heard something suspicious between Friday and Sunday afternoon is asked to call Tacoma Police Department.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.