High-speed chase with stolen merc

Se­cond car taken from new Bail­lieston es­tate

Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser - - News - Ian Bunting

A con­cerned dad says his chil­dren have been left ter­ri­fied fol­low­ing a breakin at his home.

Thieves made their way into the prop­erty on Craigs wood Cres­cent , Bail­lieston, through its back doors in the early hours of last Thurs­day morn­ing and swiped car keys and cash be­fore driv­ing off in David Mur­ray’s Mercedes.

But David, 32, was able to trace the ve­hi­cle and re­port its lo­ca­tion to po­lice two days later thanks to an app on his phone.

They pur­sued the Mercedes in Cum­ber­nauld and fol­low­ing a high-speed chase that also in­volved a po­lice he­li­copter, the car was dumped in a drive­way.

Of­fi­cers were able to ar­rest the pas­sen­ger in the car but the driver ran off and re­mains at large.

David told the Ad­ver­tiser: “I woke up for work as usual at about 4am on Thurs­day and saw the car was gone.

“I shouted up to my part­ner to see if she knew where the car was and then saw the cup­board door was open and my car keys and some money were miss­ing.

“I called the po­lice and they told us the thieves had come in through the French doors at the back of the house.

“It’s a new-build es­tate we live on; a house at the top of the street has CCTV and we were able to see footage of the car be­ing driven away.

“We then dis­cov­ered that a neigh­bour had their car stolen two days ear­lier at roughly the same time.

“The po­lice were telling us it might be dif­fi­cult for them to find our car but I spoke to some­one at Mercedes and they said all of these type of cars have a sim card in­side which can be ac­ti­vated us­ing an app.

“I got the app up and run­ning at the week­end and it pinged on Sun­day, say­ing the car was in Cum­ber­nauld.

“I called the po­lice and they traced the car and later told me the driver had been driv­ing like a lu­natic.

“A po­lice he­li­copter got in­volved and the car was even­tu­ally dumped in a drive­way and the driver got away by run­ning off.

“The po­lice still have the car in stor­age to carry out foren­sics but from what I could see the two front tyres were blown out and the front bumper was dam­aged.”

David is in the process of im­prov­ing se­cu­rity mea­sures at his home but the break- in has had a lasting ef­fect on his two chil­dren and oth­ers in the neigh­bour­hood.

He said: “My kids were up­stairs in bed at the time of the breakin and my lit­tle girl has been left ter­ri­fied by the whole ex­pe­ri­ence.

“A lot of chil­dren in the street are wor­ried and have been telling their par­ents to make sure their doors are locked at night.

“I was walk­ing along the street on Fri­day and saw a few peo­ple get­ting alarms and CCTV in­stalled, and we’re get­ting an alarm put in later this week. “This type of rob­bery seems to be more com­mon these days and peo­ple have to be care­ful and look af­ter their prop­er­ties.”

David added: “I’d like to use what hap­pened to me as a chance to high­light these sim card-ac­ti­vated apps as I don’t think many peo­ple are aware of them.

“If you have your car stolen then it’s def­i­nitely worth look­ing into whether it has this de­vice as it could help you re­trace the ve­hi­cle.”

The break-in at David’s home is just the lat­est in a spate of bur­glar­ies across Air­drie and Coat­bridge in re­cent weeks and In­spec­tor Louise Brown­lie re­peated her warn­ing for lo­cals to be on their guard.

She said: “Of­ten these type of of­fences are com­mit­ted dur­ing day­light hours and we are ask­ing res­i­dents to re­mem­ber that op­por­tunists won’t al­ways wait un­til it is dark be­fore at­tempt­ing to break into their prop­er­ties.

“Don’t give these crim­i­nals the chance to strike.

“Please move any of your valu­ables away from di­rect sight of doors and win­dows.

“You should also lock your doors se­curely, wher­ever pos­si­ble, dur­ing the day to en­sure that you don’t have any un­wanted vis­i­tors steal­ing from your prop­erty.”

I was walk­ing along the street and saw a few peo­ple get­ting alarms and CCTV

ap­peal In­spec­tor Brown­lie warned lo­cals to be on their guard

theft David’s car was stolen dur­ing the early hours of last Thurs­day

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