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‘Grinch’ Who Stole JP Gifts Gets Jail

A Hyde Park man was convicted of stealing Christmas gifts from a Jamaica Plain porch in 2011.

‘Grinch’ Who Stole JP Gifts Gets Jail

Last Christmas he was stealing gifts, this Christmas he’ll be in prison.

Ernest Polite, 40, of Hyde Park received an 18-month prison sentence Thursday for the Dec. 24, 2011 theft of a box of toys intended for a 4-year-old boy, according to a statement from Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley.

Polite took the package from a Bourne Street porch at 8 a.m. Christmas Eve Day 2011. A witness told police the suspect was driving a brown Ford Explorer at the time of the incident, and though police did not immediately track down Polite, they found the package in nearby shrubs and returned it to the boy’s father. The package contained $50 worth of Transformers, according to the statement.

Officers later located the Ford Explorer near the intersection of Eldridge and Patten streets, and the tipster identified him, the statement said.

“Every parent knows that a box of toys is worth much more to a child than the dollar amount on the price tag,” Conley said in the statement. “The plan to steal them on Christmas Eve was just heartless. Fortunately, we’ve got a city full of elves and others who wouldn’t stand for it.”

Polite was convicted in West Roxbury District Court on a charge of receiving stolen property for the theft.

Polite is on probation for a drug trafficking case out of Maine and was convicted in 2006 of drug distribution offenses in Dorchester, according to the statement. He also has Suffolk Superior Court convictions in 1994 for carjacking and assault and battery (for which he served four to seven years), and in 1991 for unlawful possession of a firearm (for which he served a year).

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