A savvy mum who turned detective in a bid to track down the home of an iPad thief was stunned when she alerted police only to be told: “There’s no one free… could you knock on the door?”
Sara Gration, a single mum-of-two, called 101 after an app on her mobile phone emailed her to say her iPad had been switched on at a house just hours after it had been stolen.
The 37-year-old rang police to alert them in the hope that the thief could be caught.
However she was instead told that police did not have anyone who could go help.
It was then suggested to her that the best way to catch the thief was to turn sleuth herself and follow the tracker which lead her to an address.
But as she sat outside the suspect’s house she became “absolutely petrified” after realising the danger she had been put in.
Miss Gration then decided to flee.
The businesswoman has now slammed police for putting her in peril and police have now admitted it was a mistake asking her to do their job.
Sarah said: “I couldn’t believe it, I was asked to turn detective myself and was sent to a house where I could have been put in danger.”
The bizarre situation came about after Sara’s car was broken into outside her home in Derby overnight Thursday into Friday.
She was alerted to the theft by a neighbour and went to her car, which was parked outside her home to see items had been stolen.
Among them was a gold iPad Air which was in a bag in the boot.
She reported the incident to the police who told her they would not be able to send an officer out and instead asked her to ask locally if anyone had any CCTV.
Then, at around 1.30pm on Friday, she received an email to her iPhone alerting her to the fact that someone had switched on the stolen iPad at a house in another part of Derby.
The self-employed bookkeeper, said: “I immediately called to notify police. I then got a call back five minutes later from them telling me to go to the location, see if my iPad was there and knock on doors in the area.
“I wanted my items back so I went and was petrified. No-one was in at the house. I called police back after I went and explained but no I received no apology.
“Derbyshire Police had the chance to recover stolen items and potentially catch a thief but sent me instead. By not following up on such a strong lead, it has probably ruined any chance of conviction.”
Sara, who has daughters Isabella, nine, and Tamsin, seven, added: “I appreciate that having your car broken into isn’t exactly crime of the century and that it isn’t a priority for them.
“But how can this be the right advice to give? Derbyshire police put me at risk rather than following up themselves. I am disgusted.”
In response, Derbyshire police has admitted the advice was a mistake and has apologised to Miss Gration.
Superintendent Tracy Harrison said: “We apologise unreservedly to Ms Gration. The advice she received on Friday was wrong and further training will be given to the call handler who dealt with her call.
“We should never advise anyone to put themselves in a dangerous situation to recover stolen items.
“An officer should have been allocated to make the inquiries that Ms Gration was asked to do.
“We were made aware of this mistake on Sunday and since then have sent an officer to make inquiries. Unfortunately we haven’t yet recovered the iPad.”
News Source MirrorNews