POLICE in Rossendale, Lancashire, have joined forces with a local school in a high-tech bid to stop a spate of lead thefts from the premises.
Officers are working with staff at Helmshore Primary School, Gregory Fold, and have protected the building with SelectaDNA Grease, a crime prevention solution that deters thieves and makes any stolen lead easier to trace.
Helmshore Primary School Headteacher Christine Myers said: “We had two incidents of large lead thefts which have left quite a bit of damage. The police have responded really quickly and have been excellent, so hopefully we won’t have any more problems.”
Police are increasing patrols in the area and appealing for anyone with information about suspicious activity within the school grounds to come forward.
PC Maggie Whitehead from Rossendale Police said: “We hope that by stepping up patrols and raising the risk of thieves being caught, we can call a halt to lead theft at the school. It is a serious offence and can cause a great deal of inconvenience.”
She continued: “We're working closely with the school to deter thieves and to make sure the building is secure. One of the things we've done is supply the school with stocks of a high-tech greasy fluid called SelectaDNA to cover leaded areas with.
“The fluid is invisible to the naked eye but will transfer to the skin or clothes of any thief and remain on them for weeks. If they are then subsequently stopped by police and taken into custody, UV lights will clearly show up the SelectaDNA giving us evidence to help secure a prosecution.”
And for those lead thieves who think they can still get away with the crime, PC Whitehead has this warning: “Theft simply won't be tolerated. Using traditional techniques and new technology, police in Rossendale will track down offenders and put them before the courts."
For further information and images contact: Angela Singleton, Press Officer for Selectamark.
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