Thanet Chief Inspector and PC chase down shoplifting suspect also wanted on suspicion of GBH

PC Absolon and Ch Insp Smith chased down the suspect Photo Thanet Police

A suspect wanted for a serious assault has been arrested after Thanet’s district commander joined his response officers out on patrol.

As part of the National Response Policing Week of Action, Chief Inspector Matthew Smith accompanied officers from Thanet’s Local Policing Team 1 who were responding to calls received by Kent Police across the district yesterday (June 14).

The week celebrates the professionalism and courage of response officers who are often the first at the scene of complex and challenging incidents.

While on patrol around Westwood Cross, officers received a report from a member of the public that a pair of trainers had been stolen from one of the shops.

Together with PC James Absolon, Ch Insp Smith chased after the suspect on foot, providing location updates to colleagues via radio so they knew where to go to assist. Moments later the suspect was stopped and detained in the Quantock Gardens area. A pair of trainers with tags still on were also recovered.

A 27-year-old man from Margate was arrested on suspicion of theft and taken into custody.

Enquiries confirmed he was also wanted in connection with a serious assault on a woman which had taken place in March 2022 and he was further arrested on suspicion of threats to kill and causing grievous bodily harm.

Ch Insp Smith said: “It was a pleasure to go out with my officers to see how they deal with the many varied calls they receive, and it is amazing to see the hard work which goes into keeping Thanet safe.

“The professionalism they show and the dedication and energy they have to serve the people of the district is truly heartening.”


  1. Daily we report shoplifters and used to detain them.

    I use the word “Used”… because 4 members of staff waiting hours for a police officer to attend was ridiculous.

    We stopped calling them now to come out and just call for a crime number for the footage.

    This bloke was seriously unlucky to be near police going to lunch!!!!

  2. When I was stopped by two lads would say 17 ish and they demanded I empty my pockets now that I did not do , I rang 999 passed to a call centre who wanted my details first , this is after being on hold for a long time, they said someone would be with me soon. Two hours later the Police came to my home and said they would do a search of the area and get back to me, they never did.
    I think this shoplifter was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

  3. this just proves it would make sense to have our officers carrying arms , they could have just shot him in the leg once or twice and it would have saved them chasing him.

  4. We done for catching that low life, now can you ( police) catch the morons serial windows smashers who in the last two years caused over £450,000 worth of damage to stores in the Westwood area. Over £130,000 to one store alone the Laura Ashley store on Broadstairs retail park, The site owners now employ 24/7 security staff to stop the vandalism on that site. Look at the graffiti damage in poorhole lane. I don’t know how much the trainers cost but the fact the police have not stopped the vandalism in that area has cost much much more than a pair of trainers.

  5. What a damning indictment of the British police.

    “Police finally do their job after a serial repeater is finally caught”

    High fives all round.

    A chief inspector did some actually policing and managed to make an arrest.

    Get the bunting.

    This is a PR nightmare.

    They thought this is a good look. It really isn’t.

  6. Well done the police, I hope that one day the police force will have enough officers to be able to do the work we ask of them, I don’t think it will ever happen as who would want to be a copper nowadays,no one wants to go to work to be spat at,bitten, punched and kicked, (wpc) hair ripped out, a crazed drunk or a addict high on a substance trying to stab them with a syringe, we hear the government saying we are getting 20,000 more officers that is nowhere near enough double that and some, so many people forget a police officer is just a normal person like you and me and they do there best with what they have, yes there is the odd bad copper but rare, no I’m not or never have been a policeman, I just see the bigger picture and what they try and do there best.

  7. Should have been in sainsburys car park as well. Would have made a difference 4 years ago. When kids on bikes were causing mayham,for customers and staff.

    • Should of been there 15 to 16 years ago to stop the parents having unprotected s#x. Would have made a difference.

  8. Why do you police think it is so interesting that you caught a criminal, and that you want this story and your pictures in the local paper? It’s your job that you’re paid for. You’re a lazy bunch of people, too busy with you’re health n safety, and diversity meetings to do any work.
    Generally you’re too scared to catch Criminals, and certainly wouldn’t put yourself at risk to save the public from harm.

    As far as I’m concerned I lost all respect for you Copper’s when you fined and enforced people to stay in their homes during the hyped up Covid period. You fined people for going out, for meeting with parents, of family, shocking!

    • The lockdowns were one of the few sensible things the government did- they are not very good at accepting advice from scientists.

  9. Big Chris, you want to try working on a mental health unit. We don’t have batons or handcuffs / battering rams. We just try and care.

    • Hi Bill I 100% get you and what some can get up to in the 80s used to live next to a lovely couple and a son who had problems ( is best way to call it ) at 12 years old he lost it big time over his dinner both mum & dad ended up in hospital for emergency surgery and the son was sectioned, Bill yes you and anyone who works within mental health care do great work but there is also a shortage of people who are able to do it.

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