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A real life Grinch tried to steal Robert De Niro’s presents

Robert De Niro may have plenty of experience with action movies but he wasn't prepared to have a real life Grinch try and steal his Christmas presents.

Robert De Niro in War With Grandpa

Tis the season to enjoy some Christmas movies, however, not necessarily recreate them. Legendary actor, Robert De Niro, found himself on the receiving end of an attempted burglary this year – as, just like the Grinch did to the Whos in Whoville, a woman named Shanice Aviles tried to steal the literal presents from under his Christmas tree.


On December 19 2022, an incident was reported in De Niro’s Upper East Side Manhattan town house. Aviles, an already known burglar by the NYPD with 26 past arrests to her name tried to break into the star’s property. And at the time of her arrest – according to The New York Post’s report – was found playing with De Niro’s iPad and trying to steal the wrapped-up gifts in the actor’s home.

Aviles, who was arrested 16 times for cases of burglary and petty larceny this year alone already had officers keeping an eye on her before the whole situation went down. And it turns out that De Niro may not have been her original target either. The publication adds that sources claim that Aviles “was spotted trying to open doors to commercial buildings in the neighbourhood before she got to the townhouse.”

De Niro, was reportedly on the upper floor of the house at the time, while his daughter was in the bathroom – both had no idea that their gifts were being snatched. However, Aviles was apprehended at the end of the day, and that afternoon was seen being led outside the local precinct stationhouse in handcuffs.

Aviles insisted her innocence to the press and cameras outside the station. “I didn’t murder anybody!” she exclaimed. “I didn’t go to Robert De Niro’s house!” De Niro and his family are safe and unharmed. The stars reps have also declined to comment on the whole situation for the time being.

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While De Niro, the star of Raging Bull, and the thriller movie The Irishman is no stranger to fictional crime, real life theft is never fun and the cases of breaking and entering always frightening. Luckily the star can still enjoy the holidays in peace as the whole event has seemingly been sorted with the authorities taking charge.