SAN ANTONIO –
The thief who broke into Monica Garcia's locked car Friday morning stole something irreplaceable, and she's on a mission to get it back.
Garcia dropped off her 13-month-old granddaughter at the YMCA day care on Labor Street like she always does.
"I was in there probably four minutes tops," Garcia said.
It was clearly enough time for a thief to make a move.
"I was about to drive off when I looked to my right and I noticed something was off," she said.
Two backpacks that had been sitting on the passenger's side floor were gone. One had a laptop and other pricey items inside, but the other backpack was even more valuable.
"My granddaughter's paperwork. I have her in my custody right now. We're in the process of adopting her and all her paperwork was in there," Garcia said. "I was devastated. It even had DNA results, things like that that are going to be important to her later on down the road when she's older and she wants to know. There's some paperwork in there that I'm not going to be able to replace."
Garcia said she would normally never carry important documents like that around with her, but she had a legal meeting later that morning to prepare for a Jan. 12 court appearance.
After she realized the bags had been stolen, Garcia called 911. The thief didn't break the window to get in, but police told her they used some type of tool to get in through the lock. Her handle is cracked, and she said there's about $600 worth of damage.
Garcia said police told her she's not the only victim.
"They said that it happens here quite often, that they've been called out multiple times for purses being taken out of vehicles," she said.
The YMCA responded with the following statement: "The YMCA of Greater San Antonio is doing great work in a community that unfortunately has experienced a high rate of burglaries lately. However, our children and staff are safe, and that is our priority."
Garcia spoke out to warn her fellow community members, and hopes in return they'll keep an eye out for the backpacks.
"They're both Swiss brand. One is gray and black and the other is red and black. The one that's red and black has my granddaughter's paperwork," she said. "I'm really looking to get that back. Hopefully, they saw that it was of no value, just paperwork, and it was dumped somewhere and somebody here in the community would find it and turn it into the authorities."
San Antonio police reported that car burglaries increase around this time of year, and police say not to leave valuables in your car. They also said to always lock cars, even if they're only being left alone for a few minutes.