Eagle-eyed street cleaner plays detective to snare Birmingham city centre shoplifter

An eagle-eyed street cleaner played detective to help police catch a suspected shoplifter on New Year’s Eve.

Sean Wright had noticed a man parking a car and acting suspiciously on the corner of Granville Street and Broad Street just after 8.15am on Monday.

Minutes later, Sean witnessed the same man running out of Sainsburys Local supermarket at 10 Brindley Place carrying what was thought to have been boxes of chocolates, chased by staff who suspected him of shoplifting.

The suspect disappeared, but Sean was able to tell shop staff and police where the man’s car was parked, and when the same man returned to his car shortly afterwards he was arrested on suspicion of shoplifting.

Sean, a 41-year-old dad-of-five from West Bromwich, who works for Westside Business Improvement District (BID) said: “The man had changed his clothes, but I recognised him straight away and was able to alert the police who arrested him.”

“Most people only see you as a cleaner, but while I might be sweeping streets I also keep my eyes open and know what’s going on.

“I keep observant because I think it’s important that anyone who works for Westside BID is prepared to protect the public and its members.”

Cherie Whyte, customer and trading manager at the Sainsbury’s Local branch, confirmed that there had been a series of shoplifting incidents that morning, mainly involving the theft of confectionery.

She said: “This was a fantastic reaction by Sean and we’re really grateful to him for helping police to catch the suspected shoplifter.

“Hopefully people will realise that the wardens and street cleaners in and around Broad Street are always keeping their eyes open and this might help dissuade them from shoplifting.”

Mike Olley, Westside BID manager, said: “We’re really proud of Sean for being prepared to go above and beyond his job role in helping the police and members of the BID.

“It’s typical of the team spirit we have here at Westside BID which is to always think of our member businesses, and to help them in any way we can.”

A spokesperson for West Midlands Police said a 37-year-old man had been arrested, charged with theft from a shop and bailed to appear before Birmingham Magistrates Court on January 28.

Credit: Birmingham Mail

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Two jumping jazz events to be hosted on Westside this summer

Two jumping jazz events to be hosted on Westside this summer

6th May 2021 - News / by Tony Collins

It will be very much a case of 'All That Jazz' in Birmingham this summer when two fabulous music events combine to provide a feast of entertainment. The popular Jazzlines Summer Schoo...Read more

Comedian Joe Lycett turns his talents to the world of art on Westside

Comedian Joe Lycett turns his talents to the world of art on Westside

5th May 2021 - News / by Tony Collins

A Birmingham comedian whose skills and knowledge have ranged from sewing to consumer champion is adding another string to his bow. Joe Lycett, host of TV shows The Great British Sewin...Read more

Brexit means Brexit … but it also means more blue-chip firms heading to Brum

Brexit means Brexit … but it also means more blue-chip firms heading to Brum

30th April 2021 - Olley's Oracles / by WestsideTeam

Despite the fears of ‘Remainers’ in the Brexit debate, not all the talent that’s leaving London is moving abroad. Westside business leader MIKE OLLEY explains that many top businesses ar...Read more

Interested in receiving future updates?

Sign up to our mailing list to get regular updates covering ongoing projects, upcoming events and latest news: