Grinch grabs 14 Christmas trees

Thousands of Christmas tree buyers across the Tampa Bay area know the name Dan Parker.

He's been selling his famous Fraser firs for more than 50 years.

But this year, something happened at his tree lot in Lutz that Parker has never seen before.

Sometime between midnight and 6 a.m. Tuesday, somebody made off with 14 trees.

Parker figures the thieves tossed the trees over a pair of fences.

"They knew somebody that needed 'em and they are in the business, and since the only place they can get a tree, a good tree, is right here, they got it from here," said Parker, who said he now plans to install security cameras and hire a night watchman.

His Frasers cost from $35 to $300, with some of his tallest trees reserved well in advance by people in some of the more ritzy neighborhoods in the Bay area.

Hillsborough sheriff's deputies are on the case of the Christmas tree caper, but Parker believes whoever took them likely has them for sale at their own tree lot.