George Washington painting stolen out of Englewood storage unit

Englewood police and federal officers continue to scour the lands for an antique painting of George Washington, which was lifted out of a storage locker in January. Officers believe it could have been shuttled out of state.

The storage locker company was doing a routine walk-through on Jan. 11 and noticed a padlock had been cut and a locker was open. They called the owner, who arrived to discover the painting of the nation’s first president had been stolen.

Englewood Police Department
Photo of the missing George Washington painting.

It was painted in the late 1800s, but officials declined to say who painted it or how valuable it is. The victim didn't want to talk to reporters, but police said the painting had been in their family for a long time and it had a lot of value -- both pricewise and sentimentally.

Federal officials got involved because they have a National Stolen Art registry, which is used by auction houses, galleries, private collectors, and other law enforcement agencies to track down trafficked art with murky origins.

“With this type of thing, it’s probably a very specific group of people who are interested in it,” said Englewood Police Department Det. Christian Contos, who is assigned to the case. “The FBI has many more contacts in their world than we do.”

Contos noted, from his end in Englewood, he is doing “good old-fashioned police work” to try to track the piece down, including walking the streets, talking to people, looking at surveillance photos, and more.

It's been three months exactly and they haven't solved the crime yet.

“It’s still a very active investigation,” he said.

Crime Stoppers have issued a reward of up to $2,000.