Two signs that were stolen from playgrounds dedicated to Sandy Hook shooting victims have been returned.
Last week, Stonington detectives cracked the case in who stole those signs, resulting in the suspect's arrest in Virginia.
The purple "Love Grace" sign at the Grace McDonnell playground in Stonington was stolen one month ago, just one week after the park was completed. Herndon, VA, police found the original sign and another sign that was taken from a playground in New Jersey in suspect Andrew Truelove's home in Virginia.
On Wednesday, those signs were hand-delivered to where they belong.
"I knew I had a strong feeling based on what I saw and what they confirmed for me that we would get the signs back," said Stonington Detective David Knowles.
Herndon police Lt. Jim Moore and Detective Mike Crossen drove 300 miles on Wednesday to help close the case of the two signs that were stolen from the two parks dedicated to Sandy Hook School shooting victims Chase Kowalski and Grace McDonnell.
"This was a great example of cooperation between our two agencies, the one thing I want to get across and the one thing I'm going to say is: This is not about the Herndon Police Department. This is not about the Stonington Police Department. This is about Grace and Chase, and that's why we're here," said Moore.
With the aid of modern technology, Knowles made a discovery last week about the suspect, 28-year-old Truelove, who claimed to the victim's family in a phone call that the Sandy Hook shooting was a hoax. Police found the stolen signs in Truelove's apartment.
"During the interview he took credit for stealing the signs," Moore said, adding that this is still an ongoing investigation.
When the case is closed, the original signs will go to the Kowalski and McDonnell families since the new signs now hang in the parks.
"In the spirit of healing and recovery, we not only pray for our angels and their families, but for the confused and ignorant, that they may find peace," said Bill Lavin, chair of the Where Angels Play organization that is building 26 playgrounds.
As for future security at the park, both the YMCA and Stonington police are working on it already.
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