Placerville (CBS13) – A family-run Christmas tree farm is now forced to shut down during the busiest time of the year after being targeted by thieves.
The Christmas tree farm will be closed this season for the first time in four decades after thieves burglarized and ransacked the property.
The thieves targeted Cedar Ravine Tree Farm in Placerville.
Father and son Gary and Erik Schoennauer showed some of the damage to CBS13.
“They clearly busted in the door, they broke off the steel bar and huge padlock that was on here,” Erik Schoennauer said.
“They’re monsters,” Gary Schoennauer said. “They truly are.”
The two can’t believe crooks would target their fourth-generation family-run Christmas tree farm.
“The house was completely ransacked, everything torn apart, thrown apart,” Erik Schoennauer said.
This would have been a milestone: their 40th year in business.
“In some ways, it was also like the Scrooge who stole Christmas, because they literally rolled the carpets off the floor and took them,” Erik Schoennauer said.
Pictures show the damage done by thieves who broke into the family cabin and shed, stole everything from televisions to chainsaws, to their truck.
“We are family-run, so we have to have all our family, extended family come up and stay here to work the farm and if we can’t cook and have heat it just doesn’t work,” Erik Schoennauer said.
Investigators say the thieves were likely looking for items they could sell to buy drugs.
“We just hope that we catch him,” Gary Schoennauer said.
As for a message from this family to the thieves?
This is the season of giving. Not forgiveness.
“I can’t repeat it on the air because we’ll have to bleep me out,” Gary Schoennauer said.