A man wanted over a burglary spree was arrested after West Midlands Police officers found him hiding on an island in the middle of a nature reserve lake.
The suspect was found shivering in bushes yesterday morning (18 June) having jumped into the water off Birmingham New Road, Dudley − known locally as the Donkey Pool − in a botched bid to shake off pursuing police officers.
He was taken to hospital suffering from hypothermia but was later arrested for questioning in connection with nine burglaries in Dudley and Birmingham.
The drama began just before 3 am on Tuesday when night shift cops spotted a stolen VW Polo being driven at speed along Birmingham New Road.
It was pursued for around six minutes − at one stage travelling at 75mph on the wrong side of a dual carriageway − before its tyres were ‘stung’ by police and the driver made off in Priory Road.
Officers chased the man through the undergrowth and contained the pond perimeter while fire service colleagues arrived with a dinghy and night-vision cameras.
A 36-year-old man was found hunkered down in bushes around 90 minutes later and was treated at the water’s edge by paramedics before being transferred to hospital.
He remains in police custody on suspicion of dangerous driving, car theft and three burglaries in the early hours of Tuesday morning − one in Sovereign Way, Moseley, and two in Oldbury’s Walton Road.
West Midlands Police detectives are also questioning the man, from Dudley, on suspicion of committing five other burglaries between 27 December and 13 June.
West Midlands Police Sergeant Leighton Shingles, said:
“This was a great spot by patrol officers and, with the help of our fire service colleagues, we were able to bring the suspect back from the island he’d marooned himself on.
“He was soaking wet and clearly suffering from hypothermia having leapt into the water and swam out to the island.
“There was nowhere for him to go, and it was only a matter of time before he was in police custody.
“This is a significant arrest for us: the man is wanted over a series of burglaries, including ones where high-value cars were stolen.”