Police renew push to solve Woolwich burglary in which rare porcelain Oprah doll, coin collection stolen from elderly couple

Posted Jan. 21, 2013, at 5:30 p.m.

WOOLWICH, Maine — The Sagadahoc County Sheriff ’s Department is releasing additional details of a December burglary in which police say thieves made off with more than $30,000 in jewelry, coins and a rare porcelain doll.

The couple, who are in their 80s, live in the Mountain Road area in Woolwich and were away visiting relatives for the holidays when the burglary was discovered the morning of Dec. 29. Sgt. Dale Hamilton said the burglary is believed to have happened the previous night.

Hamilton said jewelry valued at $20,000 was taken, including many pieces that had been in the family for generations, Hamilton said.

A coin collection worth about $8,000 was taken, including Indian Head pennies, buffalo nickels, mercury dimes, a unique 1840 dollar bill and Susan B. Anthony silver dollars. Hamilton said some of the coins were rolled, which should attract suspicion.

A rare porcelain Oprah Winfrey doll, which stands about a foot tall, was also taken. It is the second doll of a limited edition of 200 made by artist Cheryl J. Weeder and is signed and stamped “No. 2” on the back.

The family speculates the first doll belongs to Winfrey herself, Hamilton said. The owner bought the No. 2 doll, which looks like Winfrey as an adult, in 1987 for $275.

The burglary occurred right after a snowstorm, Hamilton said. He believes the suspect had been there before or was briefed by someone else who had been there.

There was one set of footprints leading to the home and one set leaving. Investigators believe they are looking for one suspect.

“We also collected evidence … we are confident this will produce a DNA profile of the suspect,” Hamilton said. “We believe whoever did this cut themselves inside the property,” and will have a prominent cut possibly on the hand or face.

“Obviously this is a miserable crime against a couple in their 80s,” Hamilton said.

To relate information about the burglary, call Hamilton at 433-8201.

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