KATY – In an empty apartment in Katy, Steve Smith and his wife are still cleaning up a mess.

“It sounds really violent,” Smith said.

On the Saturday morning the Katy couple moved from their luxury Brea apartments to their new home, things suddenly turned into a nightmare.

“We got up the next morning to finish loading and go home and my wife found the U-Haul was gone,” he said. “We realized it was stolen.”

They called the police, then an upstairs neighbor showed up with surveillance video.

“She actually captured video of the robbers leaving the parking lot with a timestamp,” he said.

In the video, you see two cars and then their U-Haul leaving with priceless items.

“There were old baby photos, there were toys for kids when they were little, old family photos,” Smith recalls. “Things that we just can’t get back.”

He says the U-Haul was locked and they had the keys to the truck.

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“It’s a matter of safety and security for the community,” Smith said.

When posting about the theft on social media, neighbors shared similar stories.

“The night our truck was stolen, I believe a door was open,” Smith said. “So I don’t know if that’s how they got in or if they just followed a real tenant.”

They want other families to be on the alert.

“I think anyone is moving or if you leave something in your car,” he said. “Just be aware.”

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office located the stolen U-Haul truck on Monday.

Smith said the truck was wired and most of their belongings were missing, but the thieves left behind a few boxes containing photos, children’s clothes and keepsakes.

KPRC 2 contacted Brea Luxury Apartments, but their office was closed for the Memorial Day holiday.

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