MINDLESS yobs have shattered five huge charity shop windows – causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.
The British Heart Foundation furniture shop, in Victoria Road, Hartlepool, which raises money for people with heart conditions, was targeted by the thugs who smashed its windows.
Shocked and disappointed staff discovered the broken panes when they went to open up the store for the day on Tuesday morning.
It is believed the damage was caused some time between 5pm on Monday and 8am the following morning.
Today, temporary store manager Andy Harrison branded those responsible as “sick”, and said the cost of the repairs could be as much as £4,000 – which will have to come out of the charity’s much-needed coffers.
Andy told the Mail: “I just think it’s sick. I mean it would be bad enough if they did this at a big supermarket or somewhere. But to do it to a charity shop is just terrible.
“I mean £4,000 is a lot of money to take from a charity and that money could pay for a lot of good and meaningful work to be done.
“All the staff here think the same as me. We just can’t understand why somebody would do it.
“Why would you just walk past a row of windows and just smash them? They didn’t even try to rob the place, it was just for no reason at all.”
Pc Neil Hewitson, of Hartlepool Police, who is investigating the incident, said the damage to the charity shop is “unacceptable” and urged anyone with information about what happened to come forward.
He added: “The damage that has been caused to the British Heart Foundation charity shop is likely to cost thousands to have repaired.
“It is unacceptable that this kind of damage is caused to any store, let alone a charity shop which relies on donations from the public.
“Anyone who may have information regarding the incident is encouraged to contact police.”
A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police added: “The British Heart Foundation shop, next to Middleton Grange Shopping Centre, in Hartlepool, had five side windows smashed overnight on Monday into Tuesday.
“Anyone who can help with the officers’ investigations are urged to get in touch.”
Anyone who saw anything suspicious, or knows who is responsible for the crime, should contact Pc Hewitson on the non-emergency 101 number or Crimestoppers on (0800) 555111.