Builder's livelihood at stake after £4,000 worth of tools stolen from van
Police dropped the case after two days and Danny McCauley is gutted

Builder Danny McCauley says his livelihood has been put at stake after thousands of pounds' worth of tools were stolen from his van.

The tools were stolen overnight on Friday, on Sandhurst Road in Cheltenham.

Mr McCauley, 45, woke up on Friday morning to find his van broken into - with £4,000 of tools stolen.

Thieves had carved off the lock on the van and "opened it like a can of beans", he said.

The items stolen were vital to Mr McCauley's business, McCauley Construction and will have both short and long-term consequences for him.

His insurance will not cover the stolen tools as he left them in the van overnight. The costs of insuring the van with the tools overnight would cost him hundreds of pounds, which he cannot afford.

He said: "In the short term, I'll just have to hire stuff. There's no point getting new stuff if its going to get stolen again.

"The worst thing is that nobody's doing anything about it."

Despite reporting the theft to police on Friday, Mr McCauley received a text on Sunday, to say that the case would be dropped unless he could produce more evidence.

Mr McCauley, who is from Cheltenham, said the decision to drop the case is "ridiculous": "The police just don't care.

"It's as if they expect it to happen, they just say 'ah, that's a shame that happened' and that's it."

Mr McCauley said that since he posted about the theft on Facebook, he has seen the same thing occurring to others in the area.

He said: "It is a massive issue. Since I posted about it on e so many people have said the same happened to them."

He added believes the thefts are beyond petty crime by locals in the area and is more likely down to organised criminals planning the thefts and sending the stolen goods overseas.

Mr McCauley said: "It's not just a couple of lads looking for a few quid.

"It's organised crime, it's gangs doing it."

Both the theft and the case being dropped by police has left him frustrated, as his business was already under strain due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He said: "It's mostly demoralising.

"You're under pressure with everything going on with Covid, then all of a sudden you have to worry about this.

"This is our livelihood. It's my business."

The theft has taken its toll on the whole family.

Mr McCauley, who is married with two children, said: "This kind of thing - that upsets them as well. When daddy comes home and is in a bad mood about it, that affects the kids."

Gloucestershire Constabulary has issued a response regarding the incident, that says: "Police were called to Sandhurst Road in Cheltenham on Friday following reports that a van had been broken into overnight with tools being stolen from inside.

"The van is believed to have been entered at some point between 8pm on Thursday

"Officers conducted all reasonable lines of enquiry with the information that was available to them.

"The victim was later informed that the investigation would be closed after all of the information was assessed