Crime

Madera County deputies find noted artist’s stolen property

Artwork and possessions removed from a stolen moving truck have been recovered, the Madera County Sheriff’s Office said.
Artwork and possessions removed from a stolen moving truck have been recovered, the Madera County Sheriff’s Office said.

Original artwork by an artist from New Mexico that had been inside a stolen moving truck has been found in the foothills of Madera County, the Madera County Sheriff’s Department said Tuesday.

On Sunday, deputies received an anonymous tip about a large amount of stolen property in the Coarsegold area related to a theft of a moving truck in Fresno last week.

The moving truck carried a lifetime of possessions belonging to 93-year-old New Mexico native Helen Schreider, a well-known author, artist and explorer – she and her husband were the first people to drive from Alaska to Tierra Del Fuego in the early 1950s – who had hired a moving company to transport her belongings as she relocated from New Mexico to the Bay Area.

Plans went awry when the moving truck was stolen from a hotel in Fresno on Friday evening.

Saturday, the truck was located thanks to a tip from “a watchful citizen,” the sheriff’s office said. When deputies got there, most of the contents had been removed, however.

Following an anonymous tip, corporal Ian Weaver and deputy Michael Fullheart went to a home in the 39000 block of Lilley Way near Yosemite Lakes Park. In plain view on the driveway of the home were about 40 paintings, along with boxes of personal items, photographs and furniture, the sheriff’s office said.

Detectives moved and stored the property and are working with Fresno police on the case.

Meanwhile, Schreider is “extremely grateful” that her possessions were found, the sheriff’s office said.

The investigation remains active. Anyone with information should call Fresno police.

“The Madera County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the diligent, watchful citizens who aided in the recovery of Ms. Schreider’s property,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement. “With the help of fine people like you, we are able to better serve the wonderful community of Madera County. Thank you for your support. “

Lewis Griswold: 559-441-6104, @fb_LewGriswold

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