A burglary victim has slammed police for failing to collect CCTV footage of a raid on his elderly parents’ home after officers deleted their copy by accident.
Matt Hunt, 36, said up to £4,000 worth of jewellery, including precious family heirlooms, were stolen while his 77-year-old mother in hospital last Monday.
The masked burglar was caught raiding his elderly parent’s home on its CCTV, but Matt fears police ‘missed the boat’ on stopping the jewellery being sold on.
Since accidentally deleting the CCTV, the family claim officers still haven’t arrived to pick up a back-up copy they requested.
Footage showed the burglar smashing his way into Carol and Gerry Hunt’s home while she was recovering from a double heart attack in hospital.
Speaking today, their son Matt said: ‘It’s been terrible. Police can’t even be bothered to take an inventory of what’s been taken.
‘It’s watches from wedding anniversaries and jewellery that my mum’s mum used to wear.
‘For my parents it’s not about the money – some of that stuff was engraved and it meant a lot sentimentally.
‘I don’t suppose there’s going to be a chance of catching them because police have already missed the boat and they guy’s probably shipped the jewellery on.’
The thief, who was captured carrying a crowbar, smashed a patio door at the back of the house out of the view of the cameras.
Carol’s husband of 53 years Gerry discovered the raid after returning home from visiting her at William Harvey Hospital in Kent on the Monday night.
Gerry blasted officers for allowing crooks to act with ‘complete impunity’ over the weekend.
He said: ‘Whilst I fully understand the plight of the force when it comes to funding, what I cannot understand is the total lack of interest shown in a crime when reported.’
A burglary victim has slammed police for failing to collect CCTV footage of a raid on his elderly parents’ home after officers deleted their copy by accident
Footage showed the burglar smashing his way into Carol and Gerry Hunt’s home while she was recovering from a double heart attack in hospital
Gerry said a police officer took a copy of the CCTV footage on a USB stick in the afternoon after the burglary.
He said: ‘I explained we had CCTV pictures, that we were able to determine exact times, including the direction he left in.
‘I copied all this information to a USB stick which he took away. I later received a call telling me his computer had erased all the data, could I copy the information to a CD and he would arrange for it to be collected, I emailed him to advise it was ready, it’s still here.
‘He promised he would get a property form emailed to me, it’s not yet arrived, a crime was committed five days ago and the police have no idea what was stolen.
‘It beggars belief, if the the property turned up they would have no idea whatsoever who owned it.
‘I know you direct your attention to the big fish when it comes to crime, but common sense tells me, they don’t start out that way.
‘These crooks are clearly operating with complete impunity, courtesy of your operating policies, I have been able to determine that the thief that turned me over is something of a one man crime wave, therefore far more important than your policy would seem to suggest.’
Matt and his father had been attending the funeral of his father-in-law earlier in the day.
Matt said: ‘The burglary couldn’t have come at a worse time for our family.
Gerry said a police officer took a copy of the CCTV footage on a USB stick in the afternoon after the burglary
‘It must have been quite terrifying for my dad to come home in the dark after visiting mum and find the patio door broken and glass everywhere. He was quite shaken-up when he spoke to me.’
The family had installed CCTV following a previous burglary, which captured the thief at work at their home in St Michaels near Tenterden, Kent.
Matt said: ‘He knocked on the letter-box first and then went away and knocked again.
‘He came back later with his balaclava on and hood up and wiped his fingerprints from the letter-box.
‘There was glass everywhere in the lounge and a trail of it leading upstairs where he went into the bedrooms.
‘He took mum’s jewellery from her box and my father’s watches. Drawers were pulled out everywhere and little pots emptied.
‘At the moment we can’t accurately list the jewellery he has taken as only mum would know what’s missing.
‘We haven’t told mum what’s happened as she is seriously ill and the shock could cause her to have another heart attack.’
A spokesman for Kent Police said: ‘We are investigating a report of a burglary in the Tenterden area.
‘Enquiries are ongoing to confirm what was stolen during the burglary.’