First a fire guts the house, then a burglar pays a visit

March 26, 2011 • Local News

A threadbare mobile home in Dexter that was scorched in a fire last May was burglarized on Thursday night, residents of the home say.

The owner of the home, Alice Darlene Fullerton, says the robbers jumped the chain link fence surrounding the perimeter of the acre lot, located at 278 Abnaki Road, and stole jewelry she inherited from her grandmother, stereo speakers and other household items. She has yet to inform the Dexter police.

“It’s bad enough, and then somebody has to rob our home — well, what’s left of my home,” Fullerton, 48, said. Fullerton and her three grandchildren, ages 12, 8 and 8, have been [auth] living at her mother’s home off of Lincoln Road in Dexter since the fire gutted their home.

Due to a family dispute, Fullerton had moved out of her mother’s house on Thursday and spent the night in a hotel with the grandchildren she raised from birth. She suspects the robbers watched her family move their belongings back into the dilapidated trailer during the day, Thursday.

“They probably watched me make lots of trips yesterday with my stuff,” she said. “And they watched us carry it in, so they canvassed the place.” Fullerton says she cannot afford to purchase a new trailer, but wants to rebuild the burned home so it is livable again.

She says she will either stay with her daughter-in-law or friends in Roswell as she works to repair the smoke-damaged trailer. She says she has struggled to find the time to rebuild her home. She works two jobs and her grandchildren require special attention since all have special needs.

Charred pink insulation still lays exposed in the interior of the home, and a burned ceiling sags above a living room that is cluttered with an old dusty piano, a hamper of burned children’s clothing and boxes of broken lamps and other appliances. The windows are broken, large portions of the aluminum siding of the exterior are missing and debris is strewn across the dirt lawn. “It’s been a slow but steady process,” she said.

Some churches donated clothes and food to the family immediately after the fire, but Fullerton says should could use more help from the community.

She says would appreciate volunteers to help clean and rebuild the home, money for building materials for the roof and interior, such as sheet rock, or donations of building materials, home decor items, such as dressers, mattresses for the kids’ beds, kitchen cupboards and an electric stove. To contact Fullerton, call 627-0820.

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