Neighbours help cops track down ‘phantom plant plucker’ on stealing spree

A woman, dubbed the "phantom plant plucker", has reportedly gone on a stealing spree across a Sydney neighbourhood – but certain residents were miffed she wouldn't nab their dying plants.

"Well actually we had quite a few hits from her," local resident Rob Lillis said, of the woman who residents have now allegedly helped police to track down.

Mr Lillis spotted the green-fingered thief on his CCTV cameras lugging a bag of loot. "As soon as I saw her camouflaged I thought: 'Yeah, we're not the first ones she's hit.'"

She was indeed spotted on camera in different streets nabbing plants. Locals Eva and Caz received one of 250 printed warnings sent out by Mr Lillis.

However, speaking to local press, Caz said she was disappointed she wasn't targeted.

"You want her to take your plants?" a reporter asked.

"Please, they're all dying, I can't look after them," Caz said.

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"When you look at the garden you wouldn't really want to take them, would you?"

But most people in the neighbourhood are angry that they've been targeted.

"The first time they hit us, they basically took 10 plants all along here. Even came down the driveway a bit and took some of the ones from there. My wife lost all of her ones that were flowering," Andrew Waterson said.

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"They came back next week and then ripped out a lot of the succulents that we had, ripped out the succulents, took the bits they wanted and threw the rest back down.

"So over that four-week period we lost quite a few plants."

Mr Waterson has since installed security cameras and put up a fence.

Police allege the thief is a Sherrie Robinson, charging her with four counts of larceny, or theft of personal property. In English law larceny was replaced as a statutory crime by theft in 1968.

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