THE FERMANAGH public has been warned to be extra vigilant to potential ATM thefts, after three incidents in the county over the past two weeks.
In the early hours of last Wednesday morning, March 15th, the door of an ATM at a shop on Main Street, Tempo was forced open and a sum of cash was taken.
The theft came after two separate attempted thefts elsewhere in the county, one last Tuesday, March 14th, at a shop on Main Street, Derrylin, and another the previous Thursday, March 9th, at a filling station on the Dromore Road in Irvinestown.
Police have appealed for information from the public on all three incidents, with anyone who can help asked to call the non-emergency 101 number, or to report anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
Officers have not stated whether the three incidents were connected.
The Fermanagh theft and attempted thefts were three of 12 reported attacks on ATMs in rural areas right across the North since the beginning of the year, including an incident at Cabragh near Dungannon at the end of February.
Now, detectives from the PSNI have issued an appeal to the public to be alert to any future incidents.
“We are 100 percent committed to putting a stop to this crime; a crime that strikes at the very heart of our rural communities,” said Detective Superintendent Neill. “And my ask is simple and two-fold. I’m asking members of the public to be vigilant, and I’m appealing to anyone with information, even if it seems insignificant, to contact us immediately.
“The 12 ATMs in question, and the recent attacks, have some elements in common. Almost all are within a rural or semi-rural location. Furthermore, most of the attacks have taken place in the early hours of the morning.
“While some of the attempts have been unsuccessful, all have resulted in some degree of criminal damage to the machine or surrounding property.”
Det Supt Neill added, “These targeted attacks don’t just have a severe financial impact, they rob the whole community of a service upon which they’re totally reliant.
“We have a dedicated team of detectives working across Northern Ireland specifically focusing on this crime, but we rely upon your help. Your support could make all the difference.
“If you see or hear anything that doesn’t seem quite right, for example, if you see vehicles or people loitering in areas close to ATMs, when shops are closed, call us on 101.
“Likewise, if you hear machinery late at night or in the early hours, please pick up the phone. If you think a crime is in progress please dial 999 immediately.”
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