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Four ‘Child’ Art Pieces Kidnapped From Cerritos Shopping Center

Stolen Art 2

An empty concrete platform is all that remains from a popular art sculptures a shopping center on South Street and Carmenita Road in Cerritos. Randy Economy Photo

By Brian Hews

An iconic art display that features children in a marching band has had four of its members stolen from the concrete pedestals in which they have merrily stood at a Cerritos shopping center for the past 15 years.

Cerritos city officials are now investigating who was responsible for “kidnapping” the three  individual copper sculptures that have adorned a South Street and Carmenita Road commercial center.

Their children’s names are Rally, Sunni and Buster.

The art pieces portray a group of children marching with pots and pans in a parade line including figures that depict a child in a wheelchair and a little dog and a girl serving as a drum major.

Over the last 2 months, four child sculptures have been lifted from the location that is located next to a popular coffee house.  The latest piece stolen took place sometime this week, apparently in the middle of the night.

IMG_5995A top Cerritos city official told Los Cerritos Community Newspaper that the value of the stolen pieces could be worth up to $40,000.00.  The city official did not want to be publicly identified, but they told LCCN that they “were heartbroken” to see the popular art pieces stolen.

Dianne Padelford Young, who is the property owner of the shopping complex, told LCCN that the art display was one of the last projects her brother Doug Padelford completed before his sudden death nearly five years ago.  “This was one of the last things Doug completed before he died so it is of sentimental value to all of us,” Young said.  The Padelford’s are considered to be the “first family” of Artesia, since their father, the late A.J. Padelford was the first person to ever serve as mayor of that municipality more than 50 years ago.

One of the pieces that still remain at the site depicts a little boy in the wheelchairs who still remains placed in concrete.

Young pointed out that “with the skyrocketing costs of copper, to replace just one of the missing child art pieces, is half the cost of the entire piece when it was new.”

Stolen Art

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