Cops Catch Burglars Who Robbed Snarky Widow

Naomi Richmond was robbed while following her dying husband's ambulance

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 11, 2014 10:43 AM CDT
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(Newser) – Imagine the worst day of your life. Now compare it to the night Naomi Richmond had in February, when her husband died and her house was burglarized while she followed his ambulance to the hospital. Richmond's case drew local media attention in part because of the snarky-yet-heartbreaking "thank you" letter to the thieves that she published, first in the Record-Bee and then on Facebook, according to CBS. A taste:

  • "You have saved me from having to come home and look at David's laptop and his guns, his prescriptions, all my jewelry … But, most of all thank you so very, very much for taking David's pillowcase off of his pillow. ...With that single act of kindness displayed by you, you saved me from ever having to lie in our bed and be able to still smell David's scent while I slept."

David Richmond's granddaughter would go on to raise almost $5,500 in a crowdfunding campaign to pay for his funeral. On Tuesday, police finally caught the alleged burglars, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Several local tips pointed them to Patrick William Mullen, 50, and Randy Hopper, 26—including one neighbor who said he heard them bragging about the burglary. Police recovered one of Richmond's rings and a bracelet from the suspects. Richmond responded with a suitably tart Facebook post:

  • "I thought I’d let you know that I have forgiven you. I’m afraid though, that your fellow inmates won’t be as accepting of your behavior as I have been. I wish you luck in your future career as prison inmates. I fear you may need it."
She also talked with the Press-Democrat, saying, "My faith in humanity has been restored a bit. I wasn't sure there for a while."

The alleged burglars, Patrick William Mullen and Randy Hopper, are seen in these booking photos.
The alleged burglars, Patrick William Mullen and Randy Hopper, are seen in these booking photos.   (Lake County Sheriff's Office, via San Francisco Chronicle)
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