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$1,200 worth of plants, equipment stolen Louisville nonprofit’s greenhouse

Published: May. 12, 2021 at 11:08 PM EDT
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When thieves stole plants and other items from the Louisville Grows greenhouse, Program...
When thieves stole plants and other items from the Louisville Grows greenhouse, Program Director Lisa Dettlinger said they left behind a grocery list of items to steal.(Courtesy: Lisa Dettlinger)
On Monday and Tuesday mornings, thieves stole a combined $1,000 worth of plants and other items...
On Monday and Tuesday mornings, thieves stole a combined $1,000 worth of plants and other items from the Louisville Grows greenhouse in the Portland neighborhood.(Courtesy: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A Louisville nonprofit is out more than a thousand dollars after thieves stole plants and other gardening equipment on back-to-back nights.

Louisville Grows Program Director Lisa Dettlinger told WAVE 3 News two people, a man and a woman, came into the greenhouse on Monday and Tuesday mornings to steal trays of plants, mulch, compost, fruit trees, and berry bushes.

Dettlinger said the loss is roughly $1,200.

“It’s disheartening because if somebody really needs these plants to grow their own food, or even the flowers because they want their yard to look nicer and they don’t have the means to purchase them, we’ll give them the plants,” Dettlinger said. “We’ll work with them. That’s what we do. That’s part of our mission to make plants accessible to everyone.”

Dettlinger said neighbors’ surveillance cameras caught the crooks as they loaded the plants onto a pickup truck. she said one neighbor even chased the thieves down the block and was able to recover some of the stolen property, along with a grocery list of items to steal.

“I think it’s obvious, and we’ve talked to some other neighbors, they’re selling the merchandise,” Dettlinger said. “So that’s even worse than wanting to grow their own food or plant some flowers at their home. Thinking that they’re re-selling is upsetting.”

The crime has prevented Louisville Grows from fulfilling orders and will force them to spend money on restocking the greenhouse. Dettlinger said she’s also looking for donations to install a surveillance system of their own.

In the meantime, she has a message for whoever pilfered her plants.

“We’re watching,” Dettlinger said. “Our neighbors are watching. So don’t come back.”

If you have information on the suspects, know where the stolen plants are or would like to make a donation to Louisville Grows, click here.

Copyright 2021 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.