Police Hunt Callous Shirt Thieves

22 June 2010, 11:04 | Updated: 22 June 2010, 11:13

POLICE are appealing for witnesses and information after a signed England shirt, which was going to be sold to raise money for charity, was stolen from a shop in St Albans.

The white strip, signed by former England player David Beckham, was taken from a frame on the wall in Vintage Emporium on Hatfield Road.

The offender took the item between 9am on Friday June 11 and 4pm on Sunday June 13. Proceeds from the sale of the shirt would have gone to local children’s hospice Keech Cottage for terminally ill children and teenagers.

PC Neil Jeffery from the St Albans Neighbourhood Team said: “This is a callous act by someone who either fancied the item for themselves or wanted to make easy money from it. I would strongly appeal to their conscience to do the right thing and come forward, also returning the item if they still have it so the money from it can go to the children’s charity. Alternatively, if you know someone who has recently acquired a new signed England shirt or tried to sell it to you, please contact me straightaway.”

St Albans City and District Councillor Gordon Myland, who regularly fundraises for Keech, had been helping members of staff at the shop sell the shirt to the highest bidder.

He said: “Whoever did this is the lowest of the lower. I am absolutely disgusted that someone could steal from terminally ill children, because that is what they are doing. The current highest bid was £600, which is what would have gone to the hospice. I would like to echo PC Jeffery’s appeal for the guilty party or anyone with information to come forward.”

Anyone with any information on this crime should ring PC Jeffery via the non-emergency number 0845 33 00 222. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers (an independent charity) anonymously on 0800 555111.