Search

Police fail to act on moped phone snatch – even after ‘Find My iPhone’ traces device to Islington estate

PUBLISHED: 07:00 17 November 2017 | UPDATED: 13:54 20 November 2017

Police didn't help Stuart Hazeldine when he told them the exact location his iPhone could be. Picture: Stuart Hazeldine

Police didn't help Stuart Hazeldine when he told them the exact location his iPhone could be. Picture: Stuart Hazeldine

Archant

When Stuart Hazeldine became the latest moped phone snatch victim, he thought there was a good chance of getting the device back when the “Find My iPhone” app said it was in Elia Mews, Islington.

Find My iPhone: A model uses the app that allows users to track their phones if they are lost or stolen. Picture: Ramzy Alwakeel Find My iPhone: A model uses the app that allows users to track their phones if they are lost or stolen. Picture: Ramzy Alwakeel

But despite giving such a solid lead to police, officers didn’t act – and Stuart has now probably lost it forever.

Film director Stuart’s phone was stolen in Euston Road, opposite St Pancras station, at about 11.50pm on Thursday.

“I was 20 seconds away from an Uber picking me up,” he recalled, “and suddenly heard the ‘thrum’ of a moped engine behind me. The phone was straight out of my hands and the moped gone.

“When I got home, I went on my iPad and used the Find My iPhone app. It said the phone was in a small block of flats in Elia Mews in Islington [behind Angel station, off City Road].

After Stuart Hazeldine's iPhone was stolen by moped robbers, the Find My iPhone app showed its location in Elia Mews, Islington. But when he told police about this, they didn't investigate further. After Stuart Hazeldine's iPhone was stolen by moped robbers, the Find My iPhone app showed its location in Elia Mews, Islington. But when he told police about this, they didn't investigate further.

“I called police on 101 and was kept on hold for a long time. When I finally got through, I explained this to the operator and asked if police were going to act.

“She said: ‘That’s up to them.’ I asked: ‘Are they likely to go and do anything?’ She said: ‘To be honest, it’s unlikely it will be tonight or tomorrow.’”

The signal on the Find My iPhone app was dead within 24 hours.

Amid huge cuts Met budget cuts, it again calls into question the force’s ability to deal with Islington’s – and London’s – moped crime epidemic.

"When I called 101, the Met didn’t do anything in that first 24 hours. Moped crime is out of control, and police just don’t have the upper hand now."

Stuart Hazeldine

Stuart, of St John’s Wood, continued: “When I tweeted about it, a number of officers got in touch and have actually been very helpful. One from Hampstead took my details, and another from Camden passed my case to the Operation Attrition team [tasked with enforcing moped crime]. Those officers were great, very helpful and doing the best they can.

“But it just frustrates me that when I called 101, the Met didn’t do anything in that first 24 hours. Moped crime is out of control, and police just don’t have the upper hand now.”

Insp Steve Murfin, of Islington police station, fronted up: “I’m upset Stuart didn’t have a great experience of the 101 service. It’s great that he had a positive experience with the officers who got in touch on Twitter and dealt with him there.

“But there’s obviously an issue with 101 and I will take that back to someone at the call centre. Hopefully we can improve that because his experience is not something we can be happy with.”

Related articles

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Ham&High readers this week.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Hampstead conservationists fear a half-acre portion of the Heath could get built on if it falls into the wrong hands at a controversial auction on Monday.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Barnet Council’s budget gap could rise to an estimated £62million by March 2024 if action is not taken, the town hall heard on Monday.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Two teenage moped riders from Maida Vale have been jailed for life after murdering charity youth worker Abdul Samad during a violent robbery spree.

Friday, June 15, 2018

This year’s Hampstead Summer Festival will again feature the “Picture the Heath” painting competition.

Friday, June 15, 2018

A paramedic from West Hampstead received a special award after heroically saving 30 people from a fire.

Friday, June 15, 2018

An exhibition celebrating Camden’s connections to the women’s suffrage movement opened last night at Holborn Local Studies and Archive Centre in Theobalds Road.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Potentially life-saving breast cancer screening check-ups for women in Camden have been delayed due to a shortage of specialist mammographers to carry out the service.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Wembley Sailing Club is hosting a Push the Boat Out event on Sunday May 20, where those interested in taking up the sport are invited to experience the club in action.

Preparing your child in advance for school will go a long way towards ensuring the very best start for your child.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now