Vandals caught on camera jumping on car

Police have released footage showing the moment two East Grinstead teenagers caused significant damage to a car by jumping up and down on it.

Wednesday, 30th November 2016, 10:03 am
Updated Tuesday, 6th December 2016, 12:32 pm
Frame from a police video showing the moment East Grinstead teenagers caused significant damage to a car by jumping up and down on it. Picture: Sussex Police

Three youths were identified in connection with the incident involving a blue Nissan Micra, which was captured on camera by a witness who contacted police.

It happened outside the Stone Quarry shopping parade in Holtye Avenue, East Grinstead, at about 6am on Sunday, June 5, police say.

Two boys, aged 14 and 15, who cannot be named for legal reasons, each pleaded guilty to criminal damage when they appeared at Crawley Youth Court on Tuesday, November 22 – the 14-year-old for jumping on the car bonnet and the 15-year-old for kicking the car door, according to a police spokesman.

The 15-year-old also admitted damaging a lamppost and bin belonging to Mid Sussex District Council in Spring Copse on Monday, May 9, and stealing a purse from a Toyota Aygo parked in Hackenden Close on July 22.

He was sentenced to an eight-month youth referral order, and ordered to pay £200 compensation to the Micra owner, £85 costs and a £20 victim surcharge.

The 14-year-old pleaded not guilty to damaging the council-owned bin and lamppost in Spring Copse on May 9 and will now face trial at Horsham Youth Court on February 10, 2017.

A third boy from the town, aged 16, who was also seen jumping on the car bonnet, received a youth caution for his part in the incident.

The damaged street furniture cost the local authority more than £1,500 to replace, police say.

Sergeant Graeme Prentice, of the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT), said: “Our NPT put a lot of work into investigating a number of offences reported to have been committed by youths in the area over the summer.

“We spoke to a lot of local residents and delivered flyers, asking for anyone with any information to come forward and report this antisocial behaviour.

“Following this, we received a number of independent reports from witnesses, some of whom recorded the incidents on their phones.

“This led to the prosecution of two youths whose behaviour can only be described as disgraceful. I’m sure they wouldn’t dream of doing the same thing to their own cars should they wish to drive in the future.

“The result of this investigation has helped to build confidence in the community, and I’d like to thank everyone who has assisted us as we continue to make East Grinstead a safe place to live.”

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