Jail for thief who stole phone form Cleveland Police’s commissioner

Police and Crime Comissioner Barry Coppinger
Police and Crime Comissioner Barry Coppinger

A THIEF was jailed for eight weeks after he stole a mobile phone from the jacket pocket of Cleveland’s Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger.

Mr Coppinger was sat in a cafe before a meeting about retail crime when Anthony Rene, 32, swiped his mobile phone from his jacket pocket.

He immediately reported the theft to police after the incident last Tuesday, June 11 and an investigation began which included looking at the cafe’s CCTV footage.

An officer recognised Rene and arrested him and just three days after he swiped the phone he appeared at Teesside Magistrates’ Court where he pleaded guilty to theft. Rene, from London, was jailed for eight weeks after the incident in a Middlesbrough cafe.

Mr Coppinger said: “Thanks to the good security in the cafe and quick thinking of the officer concerned, this man has been brought to justice swiftly.

“Clearly it’s not the type of thing you expect to happen, but I would urge other people to make sure you keep valuables in a safe place if you are carrying them round with you.”