Baby Jesus missing from nativity display

Figurine stolen earlier this week from Coral Springs community

Published On: Dec 29 2011 01:59:50 PM EST   Updated On: Dec 30 2011 10:16:57 AM EST
 Baby Jesus figurine
CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. -

A Baby Jesus figurine was stolen this week from a life-size nativity display at a Coral Springs community, the homeowners' association chairman said.  

The figurine likely was stolen Monday or Tuesday from the display at the entrance to the Turtle Run community on Sample Road, west of U.S. 441 and east of Turtle Run Boulevard, said Chris Kapish, a Broward Sheriff's deputy and chairman of the association.  

Kapish said the $10,000 display, featuring life-size figurines of Joseph, Mary, the Three Wise Men and several animals, has been put on exhibit at the beginning of December each year for the past six or seven years. The $550 handmade, hand-painted Baby Jesus figurine is usually added a day or two before Christmas.  

Kapish said someone cut the baby figure from its bale of hay. 

“You may even call this a hate crime,” Kapish said. "Hopefully, they come forward."

This is the first time a figurine has been stolen from the display, Kapish said. He said there are no surveillance cameras in the vicinity. 

Representatives of the community said they just want the baby figurine back, and they are willing to forgive whoever took it.