A dedicated NHS hospital nurse who had been working at Queen’s Medical Centre returned to their car after a 12-and-a-half-hour shift to find that callous and cowardly thieves had stolen the catalytic converter from their vehicle.
The suspect, described as a ‘scumbag’ by witnesses, was seen by QMC staff from a ward window on the afternoon of Easter Monday.
Images of the suspect were shared on social media and such was the public outrage and anger regarding what had happened that it wasn’t long before someone recognised the thief and his details were passed to the police.
In the social media post, a witness said:
“Thieving scumbags! Stealing from a staff car park at the QMC. Hope someone recognises them and does the decent thing.”
Officers from Nottinghamshire Police worked quickly to identify a vehicle linked to the incident.
As more information came in from the general public, Nottinghamshire Police detectives managed to secure out-of-hours warrants while officers deployed with the Operational Support Unit followed up on fast-moving intelligence regarding the movements of the suspect’s vehicle.
The car that the police were trying to find was located on Southglade Road in Bestwood parked and unattended.
Divisional officers, supported by the force’s drone team, made local enquiries regarding the whereabouts of the suspect and a 57-year-old man was quickly located and taken into custody.
Chief Superintendent Rob Griffin said:
“Again, this is another example of unacceptable behaviour in Nottinghamshire.
“Catalytic converter theft is extremely troubling for the victims at the best of times, but to steal them from hospital nurse at a time when the NHS is under so much pressure from the impact of Coronavirus is absolutely despicable.
“The victim has just finished a 12-and-a-half-hour shift at the hospital and finally left to find this had happened. It must have been horrendous.
“This was a real team effort with our response officers, operational support officers and detective officers – all working together to pull the investigation together quickly and identify the suspects.
“A number of officers from various departments made quick and efficient enquires to ensure that the arrest was made in the early hours of this morning.
“Everyone across the UK is working towards the government’s strapline – to protect the NHS – yet there seems to be people out there who are targeting our key workers. In this instance to travel to a hospital site and steal from NHS staff.
“Catalytic converters, which convert vehicle exhaust emissions into less toxic gasses, are targeted because they contain high-value metals.
“Catalytic converter theft can have a big impact on victims as repairs can be costly and time spent without a vehicle can make it difficult for victims to get to work, drop their children off at school and generally go about their daily business”.
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