Busted by cell phone video: Patriotic squirrels captured stealing American flags for nest

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- During the week of Memorial Day, an Air Force veteran in Texas was heartbroken to discover all of the American flags in his front yard had been stolen, but the man's frustration turned to amusement after a neighbor showed him video of the thieves in action.

"I stood right out here and looked, and I actually picked one of them up," Jennifer Northam said.

Northam said her father, over the Memorial Day weekend, put up a flag memorial in his yard. Soon, it was nothing but sticks -- the flags forcibly torn off.

"It wasn't like it had just fallen off. Both of us were kind of heartbroken. We were just confused because we're new to the neighborhood. We didn't know if somebody did it -- or what happened," Northam said.

Little did they know, their neighbor Devin Rivera-Duque witnessed the whole thing.

"I saw her with the first flag. I was just freaked out. The second and third flag, I just started recording her," Rivera-Duque said.

Rivera-Duque's video shows a pair of squirrel thieves! It shows them struggling to get the flag off the stick, but, determined, they don't give up. They're eventually able to rip the flags free, roll them into a ball, put them into their mouths and run off.

"I was just like, 'oh my God. These animals have a mind of their own!' Like, you never would guess that they would do something like that," Rivera-Duque said.

"How crazy that it was actually a squirrel that took it -- and made a nest out of it," Northam said.

"You can see up here...in the tree..." Rivera-Duque said.

Rivera-Duque noticed 10 small American flags, bringing comfort and shelter to a family of resourceful squirrels.

"It was like relief came over both of us -- because we finally understood that it wasn't someone. It was something -- using it for a nest.  I mean, how amazing that they use their resources like that. They find something new -- figured it would work and used it," Northam said.