California authorities say mystery woman left dolls outside girls' homes as a 'kind gesture'

Dolls left on doorsteps of 8 girls' homes

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. - California officials say they've identified a mystery woman who has been leaving ornate porcelain dolls on the doorsteps of girls as a "kind gesture."

The Orange County Sheriff's Department said via Twitter on Thursday night: "Porcelain Dolls UPDATE, Investigators locate person responsible for placing dolls on porches. INTENT WAS GOODWILL".

Sheriff's officials said their investigation identified a women who lived in the San Clemente neighborhood where the dolls had been found on the front porches of at least eight girls, all whom are about 10 years old. The woman attended church with many of the girls and their families.

Investigators talked with the woman and she admitted that she had left the porcelain dolls for the girls.

"Investigators have concluded that her motivation was out of goodwill and that she intended it as a kind gesture," the sheriff's department said in a news release. "There will be no further investigation of this case."

The sudden appearance of the dolls had raised some concerns, in part because the dolls had an eerie resemblance to the girls who received them, ABC News reported.

Families began filing police reports about the dolls as early as June 16.

"It caught me by surprise," sheriff's Lt. Jeff Hallock told ABC News before the doll giver was identify. "It spun out of control."

"We're trying to connect the families and the girls," Hallock added. "We're trying to figure out if there is a correlation."

Investigators found that some of the girls attend the same school, but some of the families don't know each other.

"The dolls were being left at these homes, but everybody thought they were the only one," said Hallock. "When the families started communicating and put it together, they became concerned."

Investigators were trying to figure out if the dolls were homemade or bought at a local retailer.

Though the situation may have seemed eerie to some, sheriff's officials saw no evidence of foul play.


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