Social media helps local woman recover stolen items

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GLADSTONE, Mo. -- Police are still on the lookout for suspects who stole a woman's van and a sentimental gift inside.

Shelly Tannehill says without social media, she would never have gotten her stolen items back.

A Facebook group called “Gladstone Swap and Shop” helped Tannehill get her stolen items back. In fact, it took less than 48 hours.

Tannehill hasn't had the best luck with cars. She's had two cars stolen in the last three months from her apartment complex.

"I'm always upset about my seats, because I have no place for my kids to sit, so the last time I had to buy a new seat," she said.

But this time, it wasn't just about the seats. There was something extra special in the car.

“Someone had broken the ignition and by the time I got to it, there were no seats in the back, and on one of the seats was this blanket that my son had made for me," Tannehill said.

It's a sentimental Christmas gift of a family photo that's been blown up on a blanket. It says "we love you mom" on it.

"I was really upset about my blanket. I called my son, I said ‘guess what was in there on the seat,’ and I told him, and he said ‘mom don't worry about it,’" said Tannehill about the sentimental item.

"I drive by my house about once a week, it's for sale, and I drove by and there were a bunch of seats on my lawn," said Adam Prentice, a KCMO firefighter.

Prentice said he got out of his vehicle to look at the seats and that's when he found the blanket.

"I took a photo of the blanket on my driveway, and I posted it on my Facebook and it started getting shared from there, and posted on some swap and shop websites," said Prentice. "I figured someone would have to know who this person is."

"I woke up yesterday morning, and I got on Facebook, and that was the first thing I saw," said Tannehill. "Does anybody know this family? And it was my blanket! It was really strange!"

Tannehill says she immediately messaged Prentice and he gave her the address where they were.

"I have a family, and I know if anything of theirs went missing I'd want it back so, I went ahead and took a photo and posted it, to make sure they got their stuff back," he said.

It was five minutes from her house. Tannehill drove there, and got her seats and her blanket. She said she couldn't be more grateful.

"I just thought it was gone," she said. "I don't think there are a lot of people who would do it."

Tannehill says to not disregard these sites online because it helped her find her blanket. You never know, next time one of the items on their could be yours.

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