A BRAZEN thief stole a games console from in front of children taking part in activities at a Sheffield youth centre.
The offender walked into Wybourn Young People’s Resource Centre and took an Xbox, as well as a projector, remote controls and computer leads, from the main hall just after children had arrived.
Shocked staff only realised it hadn’t been moved as a prank when they checked the centre’s CCTV system.
Bradley Smith, who manages the centre on Maltravers Road, said: “Somebody just walked in off the street, put the X-box and a few other items in his bag, and walked away while the place was full of children.
“He had to walk past the office but I was going through the post, and you can walk past it in two seconds. A few of the kids saw him from behind but he had a similar coat to what I wear so they thought it was me.
“He did it right in front of the kids’ faces.
“We realised the Xbox was missing and staff asked the kids if they had hidden it but they all said no.
“It came to the point where I said I was going to go and check the CCTV - I was quite shocked to see then what had happened.
“It’s scary for the kids – they are pretty shaken up.”
The theft happened at around 4.30pm last Monday, January 14. Soon afterwards the thief was reported to be in The Bell View pub nearby asking to use a phone.
Centre staff are now appealing for help.
Bradley added: “We are a struggling youth centre and we don’t have the resources to replace this equipment.
“We’d like to appeal to the community to see if anybody has any information or could help us.”
The thief was white, of stocky build, wearing a black jacket and trousers, with a scarf over his face.
Call police on 101, quoting incident 830 of January 14.
To help the centre replace equipment call 0114 275 5309.