Thursday, 17 April 2014

Named and Shamed as 'Vandal' behind six-month spate of tyre-slashing in Cumbrian village . . .


Jess the border collie named and shamed as 'vandal' behind six-month spate of tyre-slashing in Cumbrian village

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Car owners in Brampton, Cumbria, repeatedly reported damage
Some had slow punctures, others found their tyres completely flat

It left officers from Cumbria Police baffled
That was until they studied CCTV footage, and realised who it was

A dog owner was mortified to hear his Border Collie was responsible for causing a town's residents six months of misery slashing car tyres.

Edward and Jean Morgan were shown CCTV footage of their very own Border Collie, named Jess, caught red-handed slashing a neighbour's car - evidence that cracked the case of the culprit responsible for months of vandalism.

Officers were left clueless when residents in Brampton, Cumbria, started to regularly report damage to their tyres.

Solved: The phantom car vandal of an old market town was finally unmasked as Jess the Border Collie

Eventually, residents in the street were so annoyed they installed CCTV to try and catch who was responsible.

And, after spending six months and countless hours studying CCTV police got the lead when it transpired that Jess had been using her daily walk to bite the two nearside tyres of cars she came across - causing slow punctures and flat tyres by morning.

Jess had been allowed off her lead while being walked by her owners and had been nipping the tyres without them noticing.

Jean and Edward Morgan have reimbursed fellow residents since the matter Jess' actions were revealed

Edward Morgan and Jess was revealed to be the cause of a spate of car tyres being ripped over a period of six months

Mrs Morgan, 76, a retired Civil Servant, said: 'We are both just mortified.

'She is the most obedient and affectionate dog we have ever had and it is just shocking to hear this terrible news.

'We are very distressed by what has happened.I couldn't believe it when I saw the CCTV footage.

'To think that Jess has done this has made me feel very sad.'

A spokeswoman for Cumbria Police confirmed ten reports of vandalism had been reported in the last six months.

It is believed, though, that there will be other residents who have suffered flat tyres because of Jess and thought nothing of it.

Residents were upset that car tyres had been left repeatedly punctured over the past six months so set up CCTV in the village of Brampton, Cumbria

The elderly couple have reimbursed fellow residents since the matter was resolved.

The couple have have had Jess for two-and-a-half years.

Mrs Morgan added: 'I have had six dogs over the last 50 years and none have ever been like Jess.

'When I call her she comes straight away.

'This is why we usually don't walk her on her lead. She is such a lovely dog and very spirited.

'From now on though, we will have to start to walk her on her lead.

The couple have have had Jess for two-and-a-half years and said 'she must get over-excited when she has had a good run'

'Border Collie's are hard working dogs, and are trained to nip sheep. I think she must get over-excited when she has had a good run.'

The mechanic at a local car garage who has been inundated with punctures in recent months said: 'I was having to replace car tyres every couple of weeks.

'Everyone thought it was someone with a knife.

'I am glad it is resolved now, but it is very unfortunate for the people involved.'

PC Simon Amos, who solved the mystery, said: 'These incidents have been happening for the last six months, with many residents being very upset at the thought of someone targeting them and causing the damage deliberate.

'The dog had been seen approaching the cars and many believe that she was just sniffing at the tyres. It isn’t until you take a closer look , that you can see her biting the tyres.

'The owner has been contacted and has been very surprised and also apologetic about the whole situation. He will be now keeping Jess on a lead.

'We know that there may be other residents or visitors that may not have reported any damage to their tyres. We want to reassure them that the culprit has been identified and hopefully the damage will stop.'

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