Stolen photo display returned to Shelter Nova Scotia

Haley Ryan, Metro Halifax
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HALIFAX - A Shelter Nova Scotia photo exhibit that was stolen earlier this month has found its way home.

Local photographer Sue Siri poses for a photo next to one of the large window displays that was installed at the Alderney Landing Ferry Terminal for the shoot in November.

On Jan. 5, the shelter says a man and a woman were seen taking down the 15 photos from Alderney Landing, where the exhibit was being housed. When a witness asked them what they were doing, the man claimed to be the photographer.

The shelter went to the media with its story last week, and on Monday, an employee of a business on Jamieson Street in Dartmouth found the pictures outside its front door and called police.

“It’s an amazing end to this crazy story,” said Sue Siri on Wednesday, who shot the black and white photos for the exhibit. “I really didn’t think I’d see them again.”

Siri said she had the same reaction when she heard the photos had been located on Wednesday morning as when they were stolen – utter disbelief.

When the display was taken, Siri said she remembers hoping it was a crazy joke or misunderstanding with someone who worked on the campaign.

“That’s such a bizarre thing to steal. It doesn’t make sense,” Siri said. “But I’m really happy they were compelled to bring it back.”

Don Spicer, director for Shelter Nova Scotia, said he has no idea why the photos were left at the Dartmouth location, but the pictures were not damaged because they were taped between two sheets of plywood.

A silver lining to the incident is how the issue of homelessness has gotten a lot of attention, Spicer said, and Shelter Nova Scotia also received multiple offers to reproduce the photos for free.

“It’s nice to see people rally behind a good cause,” Spicer said.

Spicer and Siri both said they were “100 per cent” sure the public attention around the theft led to the recovery.

Siri said the photos will likely be returned to Alderney Landing until the campaign finishes in February, and said she’s not worried about another theft because this one got so much attention.

“With anything in life you have to put yourself out there and hope for the best,” she said.

Geographic location: Dartmouth, Jamieson Street

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