Like a scene out of ABC Family's Pretty Little Liars, at least eight families were startled to anonymously receive porcelain dolls this month—many of them resembling the young girls they were intended for.
The collectibles were placed on the families' doorsteps without a note. "I'm actually thinking the worst, like someone creepy watching our children and I'm actually pretty scared about it," resident Mary Robin Baziak told NBC Los Angeles. "[Someone] found a China doll on her stop that looked like her daughter."
"It's really creepy and disturbing. As a mom with a daughter, it freaks me out," another neighbor said. "Hopefully it's a prank and not someone with very bad motives." According to KTLA, several of the girls, all around the age of 10, go to elementary school together. Initially, local investigators weren't sure if the dolls were intended as a prank or "if particular families were specifically motivated or targeted."
Orange County community residents feared someone was trying to scare the Talega neighborhood of San Clemente, but investigators assured NBC Los Angeles Thursday night that there's nothing to fear. According to police, a local woman decided to clear out her doll collection and give them to young girls.
"The woman attended church with many of the impacted families," Orange County Sheriff's Lt. Jeff Hallock said. He added that the woman said she thought of some young girls in the neighborhood who might enjoy them. It's unclear why the woman did not leave a note or tell the residents about the dolls.
How did police get involved in the matter?
"The dolls were being left at these homes, but everybody thought they were the only one," Hallock told ABC News. "When the families started communicating and put it together, they became concerned."
The Orange County Sheriff's Department issued a statement Thursday. "Investigators made contact with the female adult who admitted to placing the porcelain dolls on the porch of the various residences in the community. Investigators have concluded that her motivation was out of goodwill and that she intended it as a kind gesture," the organization said. "There will be no further investigation of this case."
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