Call for town CCTV after £10k gold heist


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A business owner is making renewed calls for town-wide CCTV after burglars made off with £10,000 of gold jewellery from his Sidmouth shop – and then took the security footage that captured the raid on film.

Steve Nicholls argues that police could have caught the crooks who targeted Sidmouth Antiques Centre if just a few cameras had been in place.

Thieves broke in through the rear door of the All Saints Road shop before cracking the key store and claiming their haul last Friday (October 17) night.

“They must have been in during the week to suss it out – they knew what they wanted,” said Mr Nicholls. “They just took gold because it’s easy to get rid of.

“They even pinched the [shop’s] CCTV.”

He said he had grown complacent in his seven years at the shop without a break-in and now he will redouble his security set-up.

The two jewellery dealers who lost out due to the burglary have now left the shop.

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“CCTV needs to be addressed again, and not just near Market Place,” Mr Nicholls said. “The cameras would’ve seen it, even if it was just one on the post office looking up All Saints Road.”

Sidmouth Chamber of Commerce led a bid for Closed Circuit Television in 2006.

It won support from police, who said it could help tackle anti-social behaviour and shoplifting, but they warned that too few cameras could result in ‘crime blackspots’.

Businesses donated £31,000 towards the move but spiralling costs meant the chamber pulled the plug – after hearing quotes of as much as £250,000 for the system.

Anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area, between 5pm last Friday, October 17, and 9am the following day, is asked to call police on 101 and quote crime reference: CR/115459/15.

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