Police HQ a target for smash vandalsBy Alice Murphy
August 08, 2008
Criminals picked the wrong target when they attempted to damage a town centre building this week.
The would-be thieves chose Wokingham Police Station to attack.
And in the same night as a window was battered at the police’s Denmark Street headquarters, another was shattered at nearby John Bell Carpets.
PC Andy Roberts from Wokingham police said: “We are still investigating, we don’t know if it’s criminal damage or if someone tried to get in.
“We are going to catch them. We are looking at CCTV and checking the cameras. It’s a bit of a coincidence the two happened in the same night.”
Despite the window displaying a sign proclaiming the site to be a “police security area”, and the area being monitored by cameras, day staff at the police station arrived on Tuesday to find the damage.
The police station does not have a 24-hour manned reception desk, but officers from across the local police area use the station at night.
Police believe the window, which is round the back of the station, was deliberately targeted because the vandal would have to step over a shrubbery to damage the window.
Investigations show a rock was used to try to smash the reinforced glass.
PC Roberts, the neighbourhood specialist officer for Finchampstead, Barkham and North Crowthorne, said: “We are unsure if someone has looked through and seen a computer and tried to break in.
"We are confident we will apprehend someone.”
John Bell, owner of the carpet shop, arrived at work on Tuesday to find the damage. Nothing was taken, but it will cost around £1,000 to mend.
Mr Bell said: “This happens every couple of years. It’s just indicative of society really and there’s nothing you can do.
“If you speak to most shops in Wokingham it’s a recurrent problem.”
No arrests had been made as The Wokingham Times went to press, but anyone with information about the damage can call Thames Valley Police on 08458 505 505.