Police take action after series of life-saving defibrillators are stolen

Police say they have taken action after a number of defibrillators were stolen across South Shropshire.

We Don’t Buy Crime Coordinator Nick Hall and Shropshire Rural and Business Officer Graham Donaldson
We Don’t Buy Crime Coordinator Nick Hall and Shropshire Rural and Business Officer Graham Donaldson

West Mercia Police said that throughout January they had been made aware that several of the the life-saving devices had been taken.

Defibrillators are normally kept in secure boxes in a public location, allowing people to access them and provide help in an emergency.

The force has said it has now taken steps to try and prevent any repeat of the thefts – which could put people's lives at risk.

Sergeant Marvin Choudhury said they had been using SmartWater – a liquid that allows stolen property to be easily identified – to protect the devices.

He has also asked the public to report any instances where defibrillators are taken or damaged.

He said: “We have put several measures in place, including working closely with West Midlands Ambulance Service and using SmartWater to help protect these vital and lifesaving pieces of equipment form theft.

"I would like to ask the public to please be aware of where the Defibrillators are located and to please let us know should you notice if they have been damaged or removed. In some cases, these can be the difference between life and death and for a member of the public or emergency services to be able to just go and get one when needed is vitally important.”

Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “The mindless action of the minority to steal vital equipment which saves lives is a sad reflection on society. I would like to applaud West Midlands Ambulance Service and Shropshire’s Rural and Business Crime Officer for working closely together to ensure the defibrillators are replaced and protected.

“SmartWater is a proven way to deter burglary, through my ‘We Don’t Buy Crime’ initiative thousands of kits have been given to residents and businesses across West Mercia. Across the three counties there are schemes being rolled out by local policing teams and parish councils to put kits into more homes, building a safer West Mercia.”

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