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‘Rogue Landscapers’ Suspected In Brookline Plant Thefts

By Jim Armstrong, WBZ-TV
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WBZ-TV's Jim Armstrong Jim Armstrong
Jim Armstrong is an Emmy-award winning reporter who joined WBZ-TV in...
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BROOKLINE (CBS) – Faith Michaels, owner of Faithful Flowers, is proud of the landscaping work she does in her clients’ yards. So she was both angry and upset when she learned someone had dug up about a dozen of her plantings just hours after she put them in the ground.

“I came along and there were some holes in the ground,” she explains in front of her client’s Brookline home. “And as I looked there were more holes in the ground and more holes in the ground…and all the plants were gone.”

She suspects what she calls “rogue landscapers” watched as she and her crew finished up their work, and then showed up later that same night to steal everything.

“It’s very sad; it’s very sad,” Michaels says. “As a small business person it hits us hard. It hits us in the pocketbook and it hits us psychologically.”

Brookline Police say landscaping thefts have been a problem this year, with several reported in the South Brookline area since May. Sometimes the thieves target newly-planted trees, shrubs and flowers. In other cases, they steal pricey lawn ornaments and decorations.

In Michaels’ most recent case (her pots and plants have been stolen before), she says the total cost of the robbery will exceed $2,000. She thinks the “rogue landscapers” are reselling and reusing the stolen goods in other peoples’ yards, and those customers are almost certainly none the wiser.

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