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Hijacked Jesus statue returned to owner

8:20 AM, Jan 21, 2008   |    comments
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OAKFIELD TOWNSHIP - A Kent County woman says a treasured family heirloom has been returned after it was hijacked amid allegations she doesn't clean up after her dogs. Jean Mansel says her 80 pound cement Jesus statue was taken from a pedestal in her front yard, and a ransom note was left in her mailbox. Anonymous residents on Lindy Lane claim Jean Mansel isn't picking up after her dogs, so to entice her to do so-- they took something close to her heart. Mansel says she cherishes her statue as a memento from late uncle. Last Thursday she found the statue missing. "There were footprints behind it, and footprints in front of it," she says, pointing out where the statue used to be. My husband got a phone call and a real raspy voice over the phone said 'check your mailbox'." In the mailbox was a ransom note. "The note basically said they were holding Jesus for ransom." The note reads: “We are holding Jesus ransom until you clean up the poopie from your wieners and trust us we see you take your wieners for long walks w/out picking up their poopie in our yards. This has upset us dearly so please clean up all the weiner poopie, if you want to see Jesus unharmed. Sincerely, Lindy Lane Residents.” "It has to be a young person because they put these lines around Jesus, no adult is going to waste their time doing that," says Mansel. "And referring to weiner poopie…my gosh." Jean has four wiener dogs and admits there was a complaint last year about their leavings. But she says she's cleaned up every pile since. "I take my dogs for walks; I carry a plastic bag with me and pick up anything that they do. I thought something like that would be safe in our yard, it wasn't, it wasn't." Sunday night, Jean told WZZM 13 News the statue had been returned, taken not by neighbors but by a family member. She declined to explain further, only that this has now become a family situation. Jean says she is happy the statue is back, and says she doesn't intend to press charges So what do you think? Was stealing the Jesus statue an appropriate response to alleged dog leavings? Talk back to us by clicking on the “Talkback” button below.

Nick Monacelli

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