POLICE in south Essex are renewing their appeal for owners or users of heavy plant machinery to be alert following two ram raids which have occurred this week.
An attempt to remove the ATM from Barclay’s Bank in Honywood Road, Basildon was made at around 1.25am on Thursday, January 21, after a JCB was driven in to the front of the bank. Investigations have found the JCB was stolen from Harvey Road.
Basildon Superintendent Stuart Hooper, said: "We are continuing to appeal for witnesses who may have seen the JCB travelling from Harvey Road to Barclay’s. It is very unusual for these vehicles to be on the roads late at night.
"I would also like to appeal to anyone who owns JCBs or similar heavy plant machinery to ensure it is secure: either locked away or blocked in with other vehicles to make their theft as difficult as possible. I would also appeal to any shift workers and night-time drivers to keep an eye out as they move around a night and report the movement of an JCBs in urban areas.
"We are currently investigating the possible links this incident has to the successful theft of an ATM from the Chelmsford Star Co-Op in Stanford-le-Hope, which was reported the same morning.”
The incident was reported at 5.50am and officers attended The Sorrells store to find the cash machine had been taken.
Urgent calls or sightings of JCBs being driven around at night should be reported via 999. Any witnesses regarding the Basildon and Stanford-le-Hope incidents are asked to contact the Serious and Organised Crime Unit of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.