West Midlands Police: Quirky Cases

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ANIMAL ANTICS!! No swan song for lost bird thanks to police officers

They are protected by the Queen, but very occasionally swans have to rely on local police officers, particularly when trying to cross the road.

In September 2010 a disorientated swan confused a busy road in Erdington for its home.

After it decided sitting in the middle of Marsh Hill just after rush hour wasn’t the safest option the bird then moved onto Bleak Hill Road, going in completely the wrong direction as it looked for Witton Lakes.

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As traffic grew officers were concerned that motorists avoiding the swan, or becoming distracted by it waddling along, may be involved in an accident. After consulting the RSPCA it was decided the safest option was to restrain the bird and return it back to its rightful home.

Sergeant Simon Hensley who leads the team covering the Stockland Green area commented: “It’s not every day that we have to respond to reports of a runaway swan but officers were able to return it back to the lake uninjured and oblivious to the local interest it had generated.

"Officers from the Stockland Green neighbourhood team also work closely with members of the local community to support a Duckling Watch scheme operating at Witton Lakes. This allows officers to ensure that the lake, and wildlife living there, can be safely enjoyed by the local community."

Ouch! Camera lout taken out by lamp-post

A blog with quirky cases wouldn’t be complete without this video………

A foul-mouthed yob was left red-faced after he aimed abusive hand gestures at a CCTV camera…then walked straight into a lamp-post!

To see more of videos from West Midlands Police, why not subscribe to our channel.

Criminals! Look before you leap….

Criminals regularly try to out-run or escape from pursuing police officers – but some forget to look before they leap.

The youths were being tracked by a West Midlands Police dog handler and his faithful German Shepherd Tito following reports they’d snatched a lap-top and phone from a woman near Duddeston train station in April 2012.

In a desperate bid to outwit Tito they jumped down a grass bank behind an industrial estate near Duddeston Mill Road .

But the pair were left stranded on a riverside track and were eventually winched out by the fire service before being arrested.

The pair were left stranded on a riverside track and eventually had to be winched out by the fire service before being arrested.

The 18 and 17 year –old men admitted robbery and received sentences at court on 6 November. 

ANIMAL ANTICS!! Sid the snake can’t slip past officers

When we receive reports of a burglary more often than not the stolen property is the same – phones, laptops, money, jewellery and TVs.

So imagine the surprise when officers in Kingstanding were told that a 12 foot boa constrictor snake amongst the stolen items.

Concerned for the welfare of the animal, officers started house-to-house enquiries, and soon had a tip off that the snake was being held at a house nearby.

Officers went to the house and spotted a man trying to flee with a snake. As officers gave chase the man dropped the snake, who escaped into the undergrowth.

So after arresting the man, officers contacted the owner and helped to capture Sid the snake and return him home safely.

Although released with no charge for this offence, the arrested man was recalled to prison for an unrelated matter.

Don’t forget – never fall on your face, make a story up to the police, then put your video on YouTube.

This footage shows a 19-year-old man failing to jump over a canal in Coseley. He was so embarrassed by what happened that he made up a story about being stabbed and reported it to police.

He was fined £80 for wasting police time after we uncovered the footage.

WARNING! Never rob on your own doorstep…..

Robbing a bank requires plenty of planning, with one of the top priorities being identifying an escape route and hiding place.

And where better to lie-low than your own home?

This was the plan carried out by a 19-year-old bank robber who stole £25,000 from a security guard outside Lloyds Bank in Birmingham’s Lea village in 2009.

Witnesses who saw the crime watched the offender flee the scene into his nearby property.

Unfortunately his house was just metres away opposite the bank and it didn’t take detectives much to find and arrest him.

The man, from Birmingham, received a two and a half year prison sentence in October 2009.

ANIMAL ANTICS!! Officers take the pere-grine off smugglers face

Next up is a cracking case from the Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU).

In a more unusual case for the CTU, officers were alerted to a suspicious looking man by a cleaner in Birmingham Airport in August 2010.

He had asked to use the shower room in a VIP lounge, but when a cleaner noticed that the shower room was dry he became suspicious and alerted officers.

The 30-year-old man was stopped before he boarded the plane, and was found to be carrying 14 rare peregrine falcon eggs to his body.

The eggs were tied into socks bandaged to his stomach when he was arrested by CTU officers

He admitted offences involving the taking of the eggs from four nests on a peak in the Rhondda and concealing them to evade export restrictions.

But officers the officers work didn’t end there as it became clear that the eggs needed to be kept warm if they were going to survive.

Following advice from experts the officers kept the eggs warm on top of computers before they could be safely collected.

11 of the eggs were successfully hatched and the highly protected chicks released back in to the wild.

Never speed off from West Midlands Police….

If ever you think it is easy to insult officers and run away – remember this unfortunate story…

On 15 November 2012 PC Gareth O’Sullivan and Lee Stevens were out on patrol walking along the Stratford Road in Shirley. The driver of a car, which had just pulled out of a nearby garage, thought it would be really funny to make a rude gesture towards the officers and shout “Oi you ******* ********” before bravely speeding off.

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Unfortunately for the driver, he almost immediately had to stop for some traffic lights, giving the officers just enough time to note down the registration plate.

Amusingly the driver had recently contested a speeding ticket, lost and had his fine and points doubled in court, followed by a fine for having a bald tyre.

So when officers visited his Grandma’s house three days later to hand him his £80 fixed penalty notice for a public order offence, he didn’t see the funny side.

And to add insult to the £325 and nine point injury that he had incurred over the previous three months, his nan gave him an ear bashing and forced him to apologise.

Welcome to the West Midlands Police: Quirky Cases blog

Officers and staff at West Midlands Police work 24 hours a day to ensure that we tackle crime and make communities feel safer.

During that time we occasionally come across some odd cases.

We will highlight some unusual cases throughout the day, including bungling burglars, rubbish robbers and animal antics.

And after today we will keep adding weird and wonderful cases that our officers are involved in over the coming weeks.

You can follow new stories on this blog, or on Twitter using #wmpquirky