Appeal for information after car is set alight in Wilnecote

Monday, 4th January 2021

POLICE in Tamworth are appealing for witnesses to an incident where a car was set alight in Wilnecote in the early hours of New Year’s Day (Friday 1 January).

The fire service had attended the scene on Valley Drive at about 5.15 am to find a grey Mazda 3 on fire and believe it had been started maliciously with an accelerant.

Witnesses report seeing two young males near the scene at about 5.06 am coming from the direction of Boulder Close.


One is described as tall and slim and carrying a mastic sealant can, while the other is described as having a slightly heavier build. Both were wearing dark clothing and had their faces covered.

A couple of minutes later they ran back into Boulder Close and it looked like they had been filming the incident.

You can pass information to Staffordshire Police by calling 101, via their website www.staffordshire.police.uk or via their Facebook or Twitter pages, quoting incident number 281 of 1 January.

You can also report information about crime by contacting the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their Anonymous Online Form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will not go to court.

How to keep your vehicle safe

1. Always lock it

Fuelling up or popping back into your house to get something are perfect examples of how easy it is to turn your back for a moment and forget your vehicle is unsecured. So get into the habit of locking your vehicle even if you’re only going to be away from it for a moment.

2. Close windows and the sunroof to prevent ‘fishing’

Leaving windows and the sunroof open invites fishing for items through the gap by hand or with, say, a bent coat hanger, which could also be used to unlock a door for them to get in. Thieves can be ingenious. Don’t give them the opportunity.

3. Secure your number plates with tamper-resistant screws

The easiest way to change the identity of a stolen vehicle or avoid speeding tickets and parking tickets is to fit stolen number plates. Using security screws to attach your vehicle’s number plates makes it harder for thieves to get your number.

4. Fit locking, anti-tamper wheel nuts to secure alloy wheels

Stolen wheels are valuable, either as parts or for their scrap value. Using locking wheel nuts reduces the risk of your vehicle’s wheels being stolen.

5. Secure anything that’s on the outside of your vehicle

Anything left on roof-racks, tailgate racks, holiday top boxes or in tool chests are easily stolen when the vehicle is parked. The use of cable locks, padlocks and self-locking tools chests, which are secured to the vehicle, makes them more secure, but still, don’t leave things in them if you can avoid it. For further information and advice, visit Sold SecureExternal Link.

6. Take it with you or hide it

Your mobile phone, coins for the car park, sunglasses, packs of medication or other items that can earn quick cash are irresistible to the opportunist thief. Remember, the cost of replacing a window is often much more than that of what’s stolen. And it should go without saying that wallets, handbags, purses and credit cards should never be left in an unattended vehicle.

7. Hide electrical items and leave no clues

Leaving sat nav mounts, suction cup marks on windows or cables on view gives it away that you have left a Sat Nav, smartphone or other devices in your car. Even if they can’t see the Sat Nav or iPad they might still break in to see if it’s stored in the car, out of sight.

8. Tool theft from vans

Vans are often targeted by thieves for the tools stored inside. If you have to leave tools in a van overnight, it’s a good idea to mark them clearly with your name/company name and address using paint pens and seal with a clear lacquer spray. Alternatively, you can use a variety of other property marking systems. Items that are clearly marked are less desirable and more difficult to sell on.

Consider using a lockable cabinet within your van to store tools – a number of security rated products are available. Small cameras are also designed to record inside vehicles. Visit securedbydesign.com for more details.

You can also take photographs of items of value, make a note of the serial numbers and consider registering them online at a property register site.

9. Park in well-lit and busier areas

It can take less than 30 seconds to break into a vehicle. Parking in well-lit areas and busy streets increases the chances of a thief being seen, so they’ll probably steer clear.

10. Take your documents with you

Having a vehicle’s registration and insurance documents could let a thief pretend to be the owner. Which means they could sell it on quite easily. So, never leave any documents in the vehicle.

11. Choose your car park wisely

If possible, always try to park in well-lit and staffed car parks or those with a Park Mark safer parking award. To find one, simply check out Park Mark.