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Vehicle crime suspects in court thanks to your calls

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Two men have been charged after a focus on vehicle crime by police in Bristol.

Officers have been carrying out targeted patrols of the city in response to offences of damage to and theft from cars in August and September.

A man in his 30s appeared before Bristol Magistrates on Monday 31 October. He admitted stealing a bag from a van parked in Cabot Circus and the court handed him a 12-month community order, including a drug rehabilitation requirement.

His arrest came after a witness called 999 at about 1.30am on Sunday 30 October to report seeing someone behaving suspiciously around vehicles.

A second man was remanded in custody after appearing before Bristol Magistrates on Wednesday 9 November charged with:

  • stealing a bag containing a laptop from a car in Hotwells Road in May
  • going equipped for theft in Stafford Road, St Werburghs on Monday 31 October and
  • burglary other than a dwelling in East Tucker Street, Redcliff on Thursday 6 October.

He denied all the offences and is due in court again on 8 December for trial.

“These arrests were the direct result of 999 calls from witnesses reporting crimes in progress. Thanks to their calls to reporting suspicious behaviour officers attended and were able to locate suspects still in the area.

“I’d always encourage you to call if you see someone trying car door handles or acting suspiciously around neighbours’ vehicles. Even when we’re not able to respond immediately due to other incidents, the information will help us identify hotspots and target our patrols.”

Neighbourhood Sergeant Stuart King

PS King added that most thieves are opportunists, looking for unlocked vehicles or breaking into cars when they can see bags, coats or other items have been left inside.