With thieves up and down the country breaking into vans and onto construction sites, thousands of pounds of tools and equipment are being stolen. This issue has reached epidemic proportions in the construction industry and pretty much every tradesperson knows someone who has been targeted.
The issue many tradespeople have though is that they can’t prove who stole them. Therefore, there is little justice in the end in regards to catching the culprits. But this one man decided that he wasn’t going to wait for the police. Instead, he decided to take things into his own hands.
Groundwork business owner, Andrew Woodhouse had been regularly targeted by thieves over the years. Since establishing his business, he has suffered losses of between £15,000 to £25,000 due to the theft of machinery from his establishments.
This time though, Woodhouse was awoken in the middle of the night by his security system. It was alerting him that an alarm had gone off at his nearby business. When he arrived at the site, he ended up catching the thieves right in the act.
The two thieves though attempted to escape via a neighbouring field. But Mr Woodhouse wasn’t having that. He instead chased after them, catching up to one of them near the getaway care. There, he attacked the thief and left him with a broken arm and two broken legs.
He didn’t stop there though. He then went on to chase the other thief too and when he finally caught up to him, he lay on top of the culprit until the police arrived and arrested him.
Following his actions to defend his livelihood though, Mr Woodhouse was also facing the prospect of jail time. He was accused of using excessive force and causing grievous bodily harm against the thieves.
His defending lawyer argued though that “these thieves thought they would have nice easy pickings that night.”
“Many people would have given up and just claimed on their insurance but Mr Woodhouse is made of sterner stuff.”
“He agrees the red mist came down which you can understand when his business has almost been wiped out by crime.”
“If it hadn’t been for him these men would not have been caught. Where are we in society when a person cannot act in self-defence to protect his property? That is what Mr Woodhouse was doing.”
However, the prosecution argued that it was, “unreasonable and unlawful assault.”
The jury found Mr Woodhouse not guilty of the charges though and was spared jail time. The thieves also avoided jail time too and were simply fined £75 each for theft.
So what do you think? Do you agree with Mr Woodhouse’s actions? Let us know in the comments below.