Thursday 18 January 2018

Watch: Thief strolls into Dublin tourist office and snatches phone from distracted worker

David Kearns

A thief who reached behind a counter to grab a phone was “in and out” so fast no one but the CCTV noticed him.

Caught on camera, the man strolls into a tourist office in Dublin’s city centre and, while everyone else is distracted, casually glances over the store's counter and pockets a nearby mobile phone.

“I didn’t even get a chance to look at him,” said victim Robbie Campbell, operator manager at the Dublin’s Tourist Office at Bachelors walk.

“I actually didn’t even see him, he was that fast.”

Mr Campbell, who was locking up the store for the evening, said he was helping a group of German tourists with a map when the theft happened.

“I never leave my phone on the desk like that; it was only because I was packing up that it was there.

“We were closed, as there is usually always two people in the store, but some tourists came in and I was trying to help them.

“I got distracted and, well, the thief took advantage.”

The CCTV taken in the tourist office from last night shows the theft, which happened shortly after 5:30 pm, and how no one spotted the man, who was carrying a bag from Anne Summer's lingerie, take Mr Campbell’s phone from behind the counter.

“I didn’t notice it was gone until about 20 minutes or so. It just didn’t accord to me that it was taken but cause I never even saw the guy when he came in.

“I called it but by then it had already been switched off.”

He continued: “It’s all part of the job I guess, no one is to blame but the thief.”

The second time that the store has been targeted by thieves, Mr Campbell told that theft in the area was rampant.

“It’s always going on. It’s why we put the CCTV system in.”

Gardaí are investigating the incident, a spokesperson said.

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