Brazen thief caught on camera stealing entire fruit box meant for community

A white van man has been branded "a scumbag" for stealing a free community fruit box.

The brazen thief stealing the fruit box
The brazen thief stealing the fruit box

Councillor Richard Body wanted to share his garden's abundance of apples and pears so left them in a container on Grove Road, in the Wollescote area of Stourbridge, with a note inviting people "to take one and pass one on".

However, twice in two weeks two men ignored the note and attempted to take the lot. Councillor Body stopped one in the act and caught another taking the entire box on CCTV.

The Cradley and Wollescote councillor said: "I am just trying to help the community by sharing what I do not need but cannot believe some people want to take advantage.

"I was in the garden when I spotted an delivery driver taking all the fruit and pointed to the note and told him what a world we would live in if everyone was like him, he claimed he had not seen it and handed some fruit back.

"But, today I've come back from the shops and the entire container has gone missing so I checked my camera and some absolute scumbag has stolen the lot, and my container.

"He was in a hi-vis jacket too, sadly my camera was not set to HD so I can't see the logo on the van but someone might."

Councillor Richard Body

However, Councillor Body is not going to let the bad apples spoil his desire to help others in the community.

He said: "Not everyone is bad, I have had three lovely notes from people saying how much they enjoyed an apple or pear, the notes were a nice gesture and I enjoyed reading them, life should be about sharing."

As a professional cabinet maker and upholsterer Councillor Body is determined to make it harder for thieves to plunder the fruit.

Gone but not forgotten - the fruit box

He said: "I am going to make a solid cabinet and nail to my fence so people cannot walk off with it, I will not give up giving away fruit because of these two scumbags.

Councillor Body posted his video on Facebook and upset residents vented their fury at the light-fingered thief.

Mary Heath called the thief "scum" and Diane Bloomer branded him "grossly selfish".

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