Mum devastated as thieves ransack home for £4,000 worth of Christmas presents she saved for all year

A devastated mum has told how thieves ransacked her home and stole £4,000 worth of Christmas presents that she'd saved up all year for.

Courtney Farnell, 21, has told how Christmas was ruined by callous thieves who stole items worth £4,000 including her severely disabled 16-month-old child Minnie Mae's presents.

Courtney said she was left heartbroken when she returned home to find the thieves had left her with "absolutely nothing" just a day before Christmas.

She came back to find Christmas gifts including a brand new £700 Xbox had been stolen from their home, with belongings strewn across the living room.

Courtney, from Leeds, West Yorks, said: "It's so heart-breaking. I've worked from when I was very young for it all to be taken away from us just before Christmas.

"I worked all year to buy the presents and it's so important for me that she knows she has everything for Christmas.

"I just wanted to give her the best Christmas a mother could ever give her daughter.

"I couldn't believe it. My daughter is severely disabled and I don't know how long she's got left and now she could spend Christmas with nothing. It's not right."

Tot Minnie-mae is severely disabled after she was born with Cytomegalovirus, which means she suffers from brain damage, epilepsy, muscle stiffness and other health issues.

Courtney said that due to Minnie-mae's condition, she lives every day in fear that it could be her last and wanted to give her daughter the "best Christmas a mother could give".

But on Wednesday night, the baby girl had been struggling to settle so Courtney took her out for a 30-minute drive to calm her down.

When she returned to her home at around midnight, she found her home had been turned upside down and all the presents had been stolen.

She added: "We came through the front door. I got Minnie out of the car and went closer to the house. I could see all my belongings everywhere.

"All of the presents were gone. Everything I'd gotten for my family, for my daughter.

"They didn't just steal from me – they stole from my baby girl."

The callous criminals were caught on CCTV footage and the police are currently investigating the burglary.

But Courtney, who works as a full-time carer for Minnie-mae, said she no longer feels like her home is her home.

The mum-of-one said: "I don't feel like it's my home anymore. It doesn't feel right.

"Even if we replace the items they're not our items. I've worked so hard to get to where I am, it feels awful for someone to just take it all away from us like this."

Since the wicked robbery came to light, kind hearted strangers have rallied together to "save Christmas" and raised more than £2,000 to replace the gifts and items stolen.

Courtney has thanked everyone for their immense support and generosity who have reminded her of the "true spirit" of Christmas.

She said: "I want to thank everyone who has helped and donated. It has made our Christmas. It saved Christmas. We had nothing.

"As I work full-time caring for Minnie-mae there was no way I could replace any of the gifts, let alone everything else that was stolen.

"But everyone who has shown us all of this support has shown us the true spirit of Christmas.

"We are so overwhelmed and I want everyone to know that they've made my baby girl so happy."

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