SAN BERNADINO, Calif. - Guilt apparently got the best of thieves who cleared out computers from a California non-profit, because they ended up returning their loot.
Burglars managed to bypass Candy Stallings' office's security system on July 31, clipping phone wires and alarm cables. They then got in through a crawlspace.
"I was just so devastated because six computers had been taken and, I mean, they're just vital to this operation," Stallings told KABC reporter Leticia Juarez .
Then, just hours after the burglary, the thieves returned everything, including a laptop computer with a note inside.
The note read [sic]: "We had no idea what we were takeing. Here your stuff back. We hope that you guys can continue to make a difference in people's lives. God Bless."
Word had gotten out on the street that the nonprofit organization, which provides help to victims of sexual assaults, had been burglarized.
In order to protect its clients, San Bernardino County Sexual Assault Services does not have a sign outside.
Police are still trying to solve the case, but even they were taken aback by the thieves' change of heart.
"In many years and decades of being in law enforcement, I've never seen someone return an item out of guilt," San Bernardino Police Lt. Paul Williams said.
"I don't know what to feel," Stallings said. "One minute I'm devastated, and the next minute I just thought, 'Wow, this is just incredible.'"
Stallings is going to frame the note. "It's going to continue to tell each and every one of the staff here that do this work that you never know when you're going to touch somebody," said Stallings.