TUCSON – A family heirloom that had been stolen 2.5 years ago is now back in the hands of the owner.
John Eikenberry, 92 has Alzheimer’s and is currently under hospice care.
However, in March of 2016, he was living in a retirement community and had his wedding ring stolen. His son Eric told News 4 Tucson his father may not have remembered what he had for breakfast, but he knew he was missing his wedding ring.
His son said Eikenberry wore the ring every day for the 70 years he was married. His wife passed away months after their 70th wedding celebration.
The ring had been passed on for five generations.
This past September, Det. Jenika Bates with the Pima County Sheriff’s Department got a tip. She followed up on it and found the ring in a pawn shop. Bates then questioned a caregiver at Amber Lights where Eikenberry had been living.
Bates said Mina Beas-Campo had been questioned before by detectives when the ring went missing, but they did not have any evidence to arrest her.
The detective questioned her this past fall and the 45-year-old caregiver turned herself in. She was charged with felony theft.
Beas-Campo had been employed at the facility for 10 years. Bates said she was terminated.
Last Friday, Eikenberry’s sons who live out of town were in Tucson to return the stolen ring to their father.
The elder Eikenberry was thrilled to see his ring and said he never expected to see his ring. His sons agreed and were extremely thankful to the Pima County Sheriff’s Department and Bates for their hard work.
The ring is appraised at $15,000. The person who pawned the ring received $500 for the 14-carat white gold ring with three diamonds.