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Avon and Somerset Police have reunited a stolen four-by-four with its rightful owner thanks to an eagle-eyed PCSO.
A Toyota Land Cruiser was stolen from Frome in the early hours of Tuesday 2nd February. The owner was particularly upset as the vehicle was a restoration project he had been working on for a long time, and he and his family had previously taken it on expeditions around the world,so it had a sentimental value in addition to its practical use.
PCSO Nikki Housley became aware of the theft, and saw photographs that the owner had put out over Facebook in an attempt to raise awareness of the theft locally. Whilst out on patrol the next morning, she recognised the vehicle parked in a lane in Gurney Slade.
PCSO Housley quickly arranged for the vehicle to be recovered for forensic examination and police were able to return the vehicle to the delighted owner last week.
The owner, who lives with his family in Frome said, “We were really upset when the vehicle was taken, it really has been an integral part of some key family memories and special adventures including driving to Morocco. We really didn’t think we would see it again.
“We were so grateful to the police, in particular to PCSO Housley who spotted it thanks to Facebook. It does show the power of social media. The police have done an excellent job and got it back to us quickly so we can make some more happy memories.”
PCSO Housley said, “I am really pleased that I was able to help get the car back to the family. It happened to appear in my Facebook feed the night before, so when I was out on patrol I recognised it immediately.
“The owner put out the photos, and we often use Facebook and social media to put out appeals, so it shows it works for both the police and public.
“This is the best part of the job, when we are able to make someone’s day. A happy ending to a patrol.”
If you have any information about this theft, please call the police on 101 or email via the website www.avonandsomerset.police.uk and quote reference number 5216023583.
Alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111. They never ask your name or trace your call. You can also visit their website.