Keeping Christmas vandals at bay

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT)  - It's, unfortunately, a story we bring you year after year, but one according to victims that never becomes less disgusting.

It's the ultimate bah-humbug: stealing, vandalizing or otherwise trashing somebody else's Christmas decorations -- not only highly illegal and decidedly not nice, but a sure-fire way to get yourself on the naughty list.

Huntsville Police responded to several calls of vandalized Christmas decor over the weekend. We spoke to one repeat victim in south Huntsville who says she's not going to let vandals crush her spirit.

Renae and Ed Thompson, the self-proclaimed Griswolds of South Huntsville's Camelot neighborhood for the past 8 years, say for as long as they remember they've dealt with people pillaging their holiday display. But they have reinforcements: a security system and 3 large rescue dogs -- German Shepherds, to be precise.

But despite a bite as loud as their bark, the Thompsons are continually targeted.

"Why?," shrugs Thompson, "Why destroy something that somebody really enjoys doing and the neighborhood enjoys it? They come by and thank us."

And the thanks the Thompsons get? A trip back to the drawing board. In the midst of holiday hijinks, the Thompson's spirits stay high.

"I'm not gonna stop doing what I enjoy  because of some hoodlums that run through the neighborhood and enjoy tearing stuff up. Tear it up, I'll put it back up next year."

The lesson here: talk to your neighbors.​ And if you value your lawn ornaments, think about this: the Thompsons say they stopped filing police reports because it's so hard to catch the culprit red-handed.

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