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Unsolved Mystery: Is Someone Stealing ATL Front Yards?

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Look, this could open a serious can of worms. This blog is not really a depository of neighbor qualms, grievances about petty crime or other personal issues. But every so often, an Atlantan finds themselves in peril, and they reach out for help. This is one of those times. Some bastard has been stealing Laurie's moss. She's a reader who appreciates her new intown home but doesn't dig the whole front-yard-theft aspect. Despite repeated emails, she didn't leave her last name or contact details. Who knows if she's called the police? Our gut says "The Scar," as she calls it, is the work of one homeless man who has lost his mind, but maybe moss is really valuable? Maybe others have fallen victim to yard theft? Can you pawn moss? To best illuminate this issue, we've posted Laurie's letter verbatim after the jump. If this is a hoax, it is very well disguised as a plaintive, legitimate cry for help. If we're suckers for posting, at least our hearts were in the right place.

Dear Curbed Atlanta,

I read the Curbed Atlanta blog all the time and really like to keep up with Atlanta real estate. We recently moved back to Atlanta and are very happy to actually be inside the city. However, I wanted to share this with you. I am infuriated and feeling a bit helpless.

We recently moved to a new location, a house in … I'll just say "in town". The day we moved in, I noticed what I thought was a tire track from our movers. They were using the typical giant moving van which pulled in the driveway to unload our furniture and belongings. There was a bald patch in the moss that borders the driveway, approximately 5 feet by 8 inches. Although it was a perfect rectangle, at a glance, it could have been a tire track.

Over the next week, the "tire track" grew larger. My husband pointed this out, and remarked that he thought someone was digging up and stealing the moss from the yard. Another week, then two, passed. We now have the cumulative damage of three weeks of a soulless, evil plant thief. Right here, in our genteel Atlanta.

One night, after an evening out with my husband, my son said while we were gone he saw someone walking down the driveway with what looked like a Target bag. The next night, we pulled into the driveway at 10 p.m., to see someone getting in a black VW Beetle with a bag. I'm not certain, but this may have been the thief. Apparently, the person has been consistently removing a small piece (maybe a square foot or two?) every night. To the point at which it's now become ridiculous. I've attached a photo of the current state, about 4 feet by 15 feet of bare mud that once had a beautiful, furry moss cover. Ugh.

Are you hearing this from anywhere else around Atlanta? I don't like to think this is commonplace, but on the other hand, I don't like to be the only victim. Maybe more importantly, is anyone out there bragging about their fabulous new moss garden?

This person is a real creep.

I don't want to say where we are, first, because we are new to the neighborhood, and secondly, because it appears that the thief may be coming from another neighborhood.