Mother's ashes stolen in Loughton break-in

Colebrook Lane, Loughton Image copyright Google
Image caption Police are appealing for any witnesses to the break-in at Colebrook Lane to get in touch

A family say they are "utterly distraught" after their mother's ashes were stolen by burglars.

The robbers made off with a wooden casket holding the ashes after smashing their way into the home in Colebrook Lane, in Loughton, Essex.

A statement from the family said: "This has upset us more than anything and we have no idea why anybody would do such a thing."

The burglars also took jewellery and two laptops.

Police said the burglary, on Tuesday, was a "messy search" of the house.

The casket has a gold-coloured plaque bearing the name "Patricia Wilkins".

Police said the burglars broke in through patio doors at the back of the property at some point between 06:00 and 20:30 GMT.

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