A COUPLE whose two-year-old child died after being badly scalded have suffered further heartbreak.

Kelly Dunn and Anthony Kirtley are still trying to come to terms with the death of their daughter Chloe in April.

But their grief has been compounded after thieves stole ornaments and other sentimental items from Chloe's grave, at the North Cemetery in Darlington.

Kelly, 19, and Anthony, 29, of Chelmsford Street, Darlington, said that they could not believe that people could be so heartless.

"I felt sick when I realised things had been stolen from her grave - and what makes it worse is they must have known it was a child buried there," said Kelly.

"There were lots of teddy bears and ornaments left by our families and I can't believe someone could be so cruel.

"We visit Chloe's grave almost every day and think something needs to be done to stop people getting into cemeteries to steal."

The thefts come less than two months after Chloe lost her life.

Kelly had been preparing a bath for the toddler and left her for just a few seconds when she heard the youngster screaming.

Chloe had clambered into the bath before her mother had a chance to add any cold water.

She suffered serious burns and stopped breathing. An ambulance was called but Chloe died of her injuries. The tragedy came three days before her third birthday.

Kelly and Anthony, who have another daughter, one-year-old Rebecca, have had to move out of their former home in Salisbury Terrace because the memories of the accident are still fresh in their minds.

"We are still trying to get over our death and now something like this happens," said Anthony.

"It was even worse for me that we discovered the items had been stolen on Father's Day."

A spokesman for Darlington Borough Council said that surveillance cameras were due to be installed at North Cemetery within the next couple of weeks.

The cameras will be used to identify any trespassers or thieves, and the authority says it will prosecute offenders.