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Mystery Solved: Neighbor Left 'Creepy' Porcelain Dolls
Police say woman meant it as a 'goodwill' gesture, though families were rattled
By Elizabeth Armstrong Moore, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 25, 2014 6:38 AM CDT
Updated Jul 25, 2014 7:30 AM CDT
Two of the dolls found on the doorsteps of homes in San Clemente, Calif., in recent days.   (Orange County Sheriff's Department)

(Newser) – Glassy-eyed porcelain dolls have long played important roles in the creepiest of American horror stories. Which is why at least eight families in San Clemente, Calif., got exceedingly freaked out when someone started leaving such dolls on their front steps—dolls that resemble actual girls about the age of 10 who live inside the homes, reports LAist. But it turns out that the nothing malicious was intended, say police: They've determined that a well-meaning neighborhood woman left the dolls as gifts, reports KTLA.

“Investigators have concluded that her motivation was out of goodwill and that she intended it as a kind gesture,” says a police statement. When news of the mystery dolls first surfaced this week, the story quickly gained national attention. Even the Sheriff's Department labeled the dolls "creepy or very unusual." The mother of a 5-year-old girl in the same neighborhood also came forward with a series of wooden dolls left at her family's door two weeks ago, though it's not clear yet if the cases are related. All proof that truth can be stranger, and spookier, than fiction. (Check out how rare it is for a doll to actually resemble a girl.)

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Showing 3 of 15 comments
Jul 26, 2014 4:17 PM CDT
I bet every time she gives them away she wakes up with them back at her house.
Jul 25, 2014 3:43 PM CDT
This woman probably had a doll collection that she had decided to get rid of, and no one in her family wanted them.
Jul 25, 2014 1:35 PM CDT
P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; } This does bring up a crucial issue with modern culture. The dolls do have extremely unsettling expressions on their faces. And they appear to be modern, made since 1970. The fact is, “culture” in the West and likely worldwide, vanished around 1968. Once genuine, authentic sentiment appealing to refined sensibilities was completely eliminated in favor of “frat boy” oriented material, shallowly emphasizing entirely prurient interests, sex, bodily functions, drugs, rock and roll and wanton hatred of anyone who could respect higher motivations in life. It wormed its way in entertainment, turning it into “entertainment”, since at least the mid Sixties, but has been the rule, without exception, in every film starting at “Easy Rider”. There is not a single quality film made since 1968. All two dimensional characters, insipid dialog, universal absence of subtlety, no depth whatsoever. “Drama” is shooting people, “romance” is sex, “conflict” is shouting at each other, “suspense” is monsters, “action” is explosions. Note that, in general, 1970 is the demarcation point in movies shown on channels. Those that favor genuine quality don't play films after 1970, those channels aiming only for empty diversion for empty brains play only those after 1970. And every pother area has been likewise affected. Dolls used to be genuinely cute. If someone left an early “Chatty Cathy” on someone's doorstep, it wouldn't necessarily frighten them at all. Dolls made after 1970 are all genuinely mawkish and unpleasant looking.