Caretaker stops theft

Teacher Amy Holmes, Imogen Evans, six, and the Poundland Hound

Picture: Sarah Standing (170959-5506)

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A GRATEFUL graduate met a University of Portsmouth caretaker to thank him for stopping the theft of his bike.

John Pyle, 41, who has just completed a masters in disaster management, had locked his bike outside the university’s Richmond building on January 12 when it was targeted by thieves.

Colin Gratton, group building supervisor, said: ‘I saw four young lads hanging around.

‘Three of them were on bikes and a fourth one held the broken cable lock of John’s bike.

‘He threw it in the air and jumped on the bike and went to ride off.’

But Mr Gratton ran across to the thief to stop him in his tracks – and the man jumped off it and ran away.

Mr Pyle said: ‘I am very grateful. I had only owned the bike for five days but I made the mistake of not buying a really good lock to begin with.’

Police liaison officer Dave Fairbrother said: ‘For years we have had a problem with cycle theft around the university.’

He advised students to use a D-Lock and said there were 150 being given away for free at the university.