A grieving family has appealed for the return of a toddler's ashes, which were snatched during a burglary at their family home in Leighton Buzzard.
The child's remains were taken from the Bedfordshire house on September 5, as callous thieves plundered several items from a shrine to two-year-old Daniel, who died four years ago.
Among the goods was a pendant which contained the boy's ashes, as well as a gold necklace with a charm bearing the word 'mum' - the last Christmas gift the little lad had given his mother.
DC Rachel Chandler told the family's local newspaper the whole incident had been 'extremely distressing' because of the huge sentimental value of the stolen possessions. She also revealed the break-in had occurred just two weeks before the anniversary of Daniel's death.
"The offenders probably had no idea about what they were taking but I would appeal to them, or anyone who may have come into possession of these items, to hand them over to the police as quickly as possible so that we can reunite them with the family at this very difficult time," DC Chandler said. "I'd also like to ask dog walkers, joggers or anyone else using open spaces to keep an eye out just in case the items have been discarded."
Daniel's heartbroken mum, Kelly Caird, said the burglary had been a 'horrendous ordeal' for her.
"Things such cameras, laptops and mobile phones can be replaced, but losing Daniel for a second time is absolutely heart-wrenching and has left the whole family devastated," she said.
"I'm appealing directly to the people who have done this to please, please return the pendant to us.
It can surely be of little value to you, but it means the world to us. Please just put it in an envelope and pass it onto the police or to ourselves so that we can have Daniel back."
DC Chandler added that she could be contacted in confidence on 01582 394099 should anyone have any information. Alternatively, Crimestoppers could be called anonymously on 0800 555 111.