Emergency services have described the theft of an ambulance as the lowest of crimes. Joy riders stole an ambulance while paramedics attended a patient inside a house in Hartlepool. It was taken from Wynyard Road in the early hours of Sunday.
Cleveland Police used a helicopter to track the vehicle which was found abandoned 20 minutes later in nearby Monach Road. The ambulance was left with its lights flashing but all equipment was still there.
The patient who was being treated did not need to go to hospital but staff are angry that the ambulance was taken off the road at all.
Three people have been arrested as part of the hunt for thieves who stole two Chinese artefacts from Durham University's Oriental Museum.
The woman and two men, from the West Midlands, are in custody in the Midlands and will be transported to Durham for questioning.
Two Qing Dynasty artefacts are said to be worth at least two million pounds.
We believe there are still several outstanding suspects who we are trying to trace. We believe that it's likely those suspects are aware of the police investigation. We urge them to come forward and contact Durham Police to enable us to progress the investigation further.
– Det Insp Traci McNally, Durham Police
Police say three men were seen acting suspiciously in the Gallery on thursday afternoon, hours before the theft. Anyone with information is asked to contact Durham Police.
Thieves have stolen more than twenty Victorian grave markers from a Sunderland cemetery. The cast iron plaques were dug out on Wednesday night. 24 were taken from the cemetery in Grangetown. Police say it's the latest in a spate of metal thefts from around the region.
Neighbourhood Inspector John Connelly from Northumbria Police said 'We're working with scrap metal yards throughout the area and asking dealers to be extra vigilant.' Sunderland councillor James Blackburn described it as a 'despicable act.'
Criminal jailed for confessing to a crime police didn't know about
A criminal who is in jail for confessing to a crime he did not commit, has now owned up to a gun theft police did not know about.
Christopher Healey told police he was driving a stolen car which was pursued by officers. They knew this wasn't true. Healey said he had been offered £200 to lie.
While in prison on remand, Healey told police he was involved in stealing guns from a Territorial Army centre. Police were not aware that this had taken place. He said he had been offered £450 to collect the weapons from the grounds of 2nd Battalion the Yorkshire Regiment in Middlesbrough, Teesside.
Healey, of Enfield Road, Middlesbrough, had his sentence deferred for six months after admitting perverting the course of justice and handling stolen goods.
Metal theft is being targeted by Crimestoppers in the North East.
The charity say the thefts are costing the economy more than £700m every year and they are starting a pilot campaign across the North East, Yorkshire and Humerside to tackle the issue.
Dave Hunter, Crimestoppers regional manager for the North East and Yorkshire, said: "We want to scrap the metal thieves and the local public can help us to do this by passing on any information they might have on those committing this crime anonymously to Crimestoppers. "
To assist the charity with metal thefts call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or submit details at www.crimestoppers-uk.org