A garden gnome is back minding its business guarding a Saanich lawn after it was briefly stolen early Monday morning.
Saanich police were called to the 100-block of Regina Ave. around 3 a.m. Monday from an area resident who reported seeing two suspicious men in dark clothing carrying bags and leaving a nearby property.
Police arrived and found two men who matched their descriptions a block away and made contact with them.
One of the men had a screwdriver sticking out of his pocket, which led the officer to ask if he was carrying any more tools. The man also had with him a flashlight, wrench and a knife.
The officer searched the second man, who was carrying a hammer, screwdriver, vice grips and a crescent wrench.
A canine unit was called in and the dog found, just a few metres away, a garden gnome and pressure washer. The owners were located and the items were returned.
“These items were taken from residences a short distance away,” said Sgt. Dean Jantzen. “It looks like they were taking items that they could find on the exterior of a home or in a carport.
“This is a warning to residents that anything outside your house that isn’t attached or affixed can easily be taken.”
Arrested were a 23-year-old Victoria man and a 28-year-old Saanich man.
Both face charges of possession of stolen property and possession of break-in instruments.