Note: The most recent update begins at the end of the original post.
The post went up in the Craigslist "lost and found" section May 18, and is a parent's plea to a thief.
According to the post, one or more persons broke into a Marina home May 12, and among the things stolen were the ashes of the parent's baby son, which were "taken out of his keepsake box with his picture and a white ribbon and angel charm."
The parent asks that the ashes be returned to the Marina police, fire department or a local mortuary, no questions asked.
"This is the last link to our son," the post reads. "As a parent, losing a child is something you never get over; losing him twice is heartbreaking."
Marina Police Chief Edmundo Rodriguez says the May 12 robbery has not yet been reported to Marina police, and that he will follow up with the sheriff's office and CSUMB police to see if they have any knowledge of it.
"If they return it to us," he says, "how would we know who to give it back to?"
UPDATE (5/21 5:30pm): Potential progress on the case is being slowed by an unfortunate set of coincidences.
Marina Police Cmdr. Bob Nolan says the sheriff's office took the initial report, and not Marina PD, because the entire Marina department was doing a training with Oakland police when the case was reported.
The sheriff's office covered Marina for eight hours during that time.
But Marina PD hasn't received the report from the responding deputy or sheriff's crime scene investigators because unfortunately, the responding deputy has since gone on vacation abroad, and did so before filing a report.
"We're talking to the family, but we don’t have a lot of details," he says. "We’re trying to investigate in past tense."
Nolan says the case has just been sent to Marina PD's investigations bureau, and investigators will continue working the case in the absence of the report from the sheriff's office.
"We got guys working on it, but it's still kind of murky."
In a statement Nolan sent out this afternoon, more facts about the case emerged, and indicated the victims' home was "ransacked" and several items were taken.
It also states the family is choosing to remain anonymous, and that the remains can be turned in to Marina PD. Anyone with info about the case is encouraged to call the department at 384-7575.
It remains unclear if the baby's ashes were taken intentionally, but a quick Google search reveals similar cases have occurred elsewhere in the last year.
In one such instance in Phoenix this February, burglars took a sealed bag of ashes out of a silver keepsake box and left the box upside down.
In none of cases this reporter found online were there any indications of stolen ashes being recovered.
UPDATE (5/20 4:50pm): Marina Police Cmdr. Roberto Filice says the department has made contact with the victim, and that the case had originally been reported to the Monterey County Sheriff's Office.
The sheriff's office will be sending Marina PD their report of the incident.