Richmond police need your help returning these stolen family photos

Positively Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Do you recognize these family photos? Help the Richmond Police Department (RPD) find who they belong to this holiday season!

RPD posted the photos on Facebook saying they were recovered in a car that had been stolen from the Maymont neighborhood. Police believe the photos were in the vehicle as a result of a different crime.

Detectives are investigating and trying to determine the location and victim that is connected to this case.

Third Precinct Detective Sandlin tells 8News these are just five of the roughly 30 photos found inside a purse in a stolen Toyota Prius. That car has since been returned to its owner, but the pictures do not belong to them.

In order to learn more about from where the photos came and to whom they belong, 8News sought the expertise of Alan Boyd, the President of the Chesapeake Chapter of the Company of Military Historians.

“Based upon the style of the cars and the uniforms, it’s from the mid- to early-1960s,” Boyd said. “With the Volkswagen and the name tag, that’s how we were able to get the accurate date. It’s a tan uniform and it does not have a subdued name tag, so that puts it before 1968.”

Boyd says the presence of a German-made car does not mean the photos were taken in Germany because he says Volkswagens were widespread in the U.S. at that time. However, historians say an Army patch in one of the photos, which is difficult to make out because of the quality, does resemble that of units associated with the U.S. Army in Germany.

“Those are basically family photos,” Boyd said. “Someone pulled out their Brownie or a similar camera and were memorializing the time that that person was with them or when they were in a unit. It’s a picture that someone would take with their friend to send back home to Mom and Dad.”

Another detail in the photos RPD shared: just one is in black and white.

“Black and white was a lot cheaper than color, so a lot of times, people would — on their daily photos — would take and do the black and white photo, so that that way they had it were it would be a going to church or going to someone’s party, so they could kind of remember that particular day,” Boyd said.

Given the time frame in which the pictures were likely taken, Boyd says the subjects in the photos could still be alive, with more stories to pass on to the next generation.

“I think the family would really appreciate it,” Boyd said. “It kind of shows how people really do care about each other still, and I know there’s a lot of strife in the world, but people always care about people that they interact with and that they have a bond with.”

To claim the photos and get them back to the family, please call Third Precinct Detective Sandlin at (804) 510-4201.


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