Parents’ concerns quelled in mystery porch dolls case
A Southern California woman told investigators she was embarrassed that her well-intentioned act of leaving porcelain dolls outside girls’ homes scared a quiet San Clemente community, a sheriff’s official said.
Over the past week, a mother, whose children had grown up, discreetly dropped off eight to 10 dolls on residents’ door steps – each of them bearing a resemblance to a little girl living in the home. But the ornate dolls, left without any written message, unnerved residents.
“Because her intentions were good, she felt embarrassed at the fear she instilled in the community,” said Orange County Sheriff’s Lt. Jeff Hallock. “She just thought she was being nice.”
Because the woman’s children had outgrown playing with dolls, she elected to give them away, Hallock said.
“When she was deciding which dolls to give to which girls, she did make a conscious decision that she thought certain dolls resembled certain girls,” Hallock said.
Because of the fact no note was attached to the dolls, all that residents knew was that someone for some reason had left a doll that looks like their daughter on their front door step without being seen, which gave off a “creepy” vibe, Hallock said.
Investigators soon discovered a common thread among the homeowners who received the dolls: They attended the same church. It wasn’t long before they were able to track down the woman and contact her.
Parents, many of whom know the woman through the church, were relieved.