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Dog-shaped collection box stolen

The dog charity box is taken from Bicester North station

The dog charity box is taken from Bicester North station

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter. Please call me on (01865) 425411

THIS is the moment a “callous and heartless” thief stole one of three large dog-shaped charity boxes from two Oxfordshire rail stations.

The CCTV image shows the man taking a three-foot high Guide Dogs collection box from Bicester North Station.

The boxes, which raise funds to provide mobility for people who are blind and partially sighted, were taken between Friday, November 9, and Tuesday, November 13 from Banbury and Bicester stations.

British Transport Police has appealed for information.

Pc Gary Archer, the investigating officer, said: “Around 3.50am on Friday, November 9, CCTV captured a man entering Bicester North station before removing two collection boxes.

“Officers were alerted and, after carrying out a search of the area, discovered two of the discarded boxes, which had been emptied.”

A box was also taken from Banbury station sometime between Friday, November 9, and Tuesday, November 13.

Pc Archer added: “This is a sad case that has seen charity boxes taken from a public space. These callous thefts are simply unacceptable and when the victim is a charity, it makes the thefts particularly heinous.

“It is imperative that we trace whoever is responsible, and I’d urge anyone with any information into these despicable crimes to come forward and assist officers in this investigation.”

Graham Kensett, Mobility Team Manager, Guide Dogs Leamington Spa, said: "This was a particularly heartless crime as the money that was stolen was given to Guide Dogs by the public to help blind and partially sighted people.

“We rely on donations to fund our work which transforms the lives of thousands of people who are living with sight loss.

“We urge anyone with any information about the thefts to contact the British Transport Police."

Anyone with information is asked to contact British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40.

Information can also be passed to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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