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Rare Grateful Dead items stolen from auction house

Grateful Dead memorabilia worth $75,000 (£48,000) has been stolen from an auction house.

The items were sold as part of April’s Grateful Dead Family Jubilee Auction, but were stolen before they could be delivered to the winning bidders. The theft took place on the weekend of April 25 to 26 at Donley’s Auction Services in Union, USA.

Auction bosses now fear the goods will be destroyed by the thieves to avoid getting caught. Randy Donley tells My Suburban Life: “Please help us solve this crime. I am offering a reward for its safe return. Please do not destroy it for fear of getting caught. We just want it returned.”

Police say the items were being processed for shipping, with some awaiting collection by armoured car. The most valuable piece stolen is a $25,000 (£16,000) hand-painted, 1966 original Stanley Mouse/Alton Kelley Family Dog skeleton with roses.

The image became an iconic symbol for the band and the particular piece began as a print that was recently hand-painted for the auction.

Donley adds: “This is not a piece that can be re-sold. It is too well-known.”

Grateful Dead will play three farewell shows this summer.

Stef wrote close to 5000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind in late 2016 and has since moved to his beloved Canada.