Crooks pay for new stingers in crackdown on car crime
POLICE battling an explosion in car theft figures have bought 19 new stingers in a bid to fight back.
And the devices – spiked metal ribbons placed across a road to puncture tyres – are being paid for by criminals themselves.
The £ 10,000 cost of the devices came from money stripped from crooks and the sale of goods seized from them.
Car and truck theft figures rocketed by almost 300 per cent in three years in the West Midlands, according to figures released earlier this year by police and crime commissioner David Jamieson. The figures published by West Midlands Police show that 3,420 vehicles were stolen in the region in the first six months of 2018, compared with 1,210 over the same period in 2015.
The stingers are now on- board a fleet of Vauxhall Insignias used by response officers to attend emergencies in Solihull and Coventry.
The first successful arrest using the new stingers came on September 23 when officers patrolling the Allesley area of Coventry spotted an Audi A3, which was stolen in August, travelling on fake plates. A stinger was used to puncture its tyres and, following a chase, the driver was arrested. A can of CS spray was found in the car.
A 25- year- old man from Willenhall, Coventry, was later charged with dangerous driving, possessing CS spray, driving without insurance and driving with no licence.
Sgt Dale Hughes said: “Each stinger costs about £ 500 but this single use resulted in the recovery of a stolen car with a value of £ 8,000, the recovery of a CS canister and the driver being charged with multiple offences. It’s satisfying to know that these devices are being funded directly through money that has been seized from criminals.”
A police stinger device