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Cops: 2 women went on holiday gift-stealing spree

Left, Teresa Doige, 42, of Mattituck, and right,

Left, Teresa Doige, 42, of Mattituck, and right, Lillian Kirchberge, 42, also of Mattituck, were arrested after video surveillance from a home implicated the women in the theft of holiday packages from Wading River homes, Riverhead police said. (Dec. 18, 2012) Credit: Riverhead Police Department

Two Mattituck women were arrested on petty larceny charges after authorities said Wednesday they stole packages, primarily Christmas gifts, from the front porches of Wading River homes.

Lillian Kirchberger and Teresa Doige, both 42, of 55 Eastward Ct., were arrested Tuesday after video surveillance from one of the homes implicated them, Riverhead Town police said.

Police said they first received reports Friday of packages being stolen from the porches of residences. Stolen packages, including those containing jewelry, toys and ornaments, were recovered from the suspects' home, police said.

"They really didn't give us a reason," said Riverhead Det. Sgt. Joseph Loggia, when asked a motive behind the Grinch-like behavior. Riverhead police said Kirchberger is married and Doige is a friend who lives with the Kirchbergers.

Loggia said video shows two suspects pulling into the driveway of a Wading River home. As the driver gets out to retrieve the package, the passenger slides across to take the wheel, Loggia said. The first person returns to the car, enters the passenger side and the two then drive off.

Det. Sgt. John Sinning of Southold Town Police said the two are suspects in about seven similar incidents in that town.

Evidence includes "about one whole house of stolen property," Sinning said.

He said a number of thefts have been reported and he thinks others never were reported. The investigation now involves matching packages to people, he said.

Anyone who thinks a package was stolen from the front of their home should call the Southold police at 631-765-2600 and ask for the Detective Division, Sinning said.

Each woman is charged with three counts of petty larceny and both were given desk appearance tickets.

They are scheduled to be arraigned in Riverhead Justice Court on Jan. 7.

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