Thief targets 21 shops in two nights, escapes from police net

Thief targets 21 shops in two nights, escapes from police net
An official searching for fingerprints. Photo: Manorama

Kattakkada: An ingenious thief has hoodwinked the police and carried out 21 robberies over two consecutive nights in the locality. After breaking into a series of shops on Monday night, the culprit entered 16 other business establishments on Tuesday, escaping with around Rs 90,000 in cash and several items worth tens of thousands of rupees.

Incidentally, the man had been nabbed by the Kattakkada police during patrolling, but he freed himself forcibly and escaped. The thief was trying to break the lock of a stationery shop in front of Poovachal UP School when the police team caught hold of him. However, he pushed the officers away, jumped on a scooter the engine of which was running and raced away.

The man wore a mask and had thrown an iron rod used to break locks in front of the police before escaping. The patrolling team informed their counterparts in the police station that the man was headed their way. The officers at the station came out and tried to block the man, who was riding along the road in front of the station. However, the man deceived the police again.

The culprit travelled to Choondupalaka area. Sometime later, the police station received a call that a man was lying on the road at Choondupalaka. Though a police team rushed to the spot, there was no trace of the man yet again.

A rich haul

The thief started his series of robberies by taking away Rs 43,300 in cash, cigarettes worth Rs 6,500, a television and a mobile from six shops. He also stole a helmet and raincoat kept on a scooter parked in front of a nearby house.

From the provision store belonging to Nandakumaran Nair at Thrikkanjirapuram in Amachal, a TV, mobile phone and Rs 3,000 was stolen. The lock of another provision store, owned by Farook, was broken but the thief did not enter the shop. The locks of Jahan’s furniture shop at Amachal junction were also destroyed.

At the junction, four shops in one building were targeted. They were a greengrocery, provisions store, an electronics shop and a cement dealer. Cement trader Jayakumar lost Rs 500. Yet another shop was broken into but nothing was stolen.

Meanwhile, the man also found his way into a closed jewellery shop and overturned the locker and glass case. The cement floor of the shop was damaged during the attempt to break the lock.

Other thefts included Rs 11,000 from Hariharan’s provisions store at Plavoor and three shops at Kattakkada Market Junction, where a chicken shop, traditional medicine dealer and scrap dealer lost items and money. One of the sufferers was Noushad, who ran a bunk shop. His losses amounted to Rs 3,700 in cash and cigarettes worth around Rs 4,000. The traditional medicine dealer Kuttappan was poorer by Rs 2,600.

Other major thefts took place at the rubber dealer Aziz Kannu’s shop, from where the thief took away Rs 5,000 and at another rubber shop belonging to Abdul Kareem at Kaithakkonam from where the stolen money amounted to Rs 17,500.

At Mulamoodu Junction, while the thief spared Sebastian’s shop, he deprived Janardanan’s outlet of cigarettes worth Rs 2,500 and Rs 500 in cash.