Mansfield pub landlords have released CCTV footage after two thieves ‘distracted’ them whilst stealing a charity collection box from the bar.
Landlord Carl Simmons, 50, was distracted by the two men when they asked for a description of each of the spirits on the top shelf at the back of the bar at the Pheasant Inn, on Chesterfield Road.
Whilst his back was turned, one of the men unhooked the John Eastwood Hospice charity box from around the beer pump and the men made a swift getaway - after telling the landlord they did not have enough money for the Martini he had just poured out.
And despite their strange behaviour, Carl said he and his wife Veronica didn’t notice the box had gone missing until a few days later when a customer asked to put their change in it.
Carl said: “We’re just angry that we didn’t see it - but if you’re not looking out for it, these things can happen.
“But it’s disgusting that this has happened because the money goes towards terminally ill people in the hospice.
“It’s not us who are the victims here, it’s everyone at the hospice because the charity box was for them.”
The amount of money in the charity box is unknown, but Carl said he knew it was ‘quite full’.
A few days later, the pub was contacted to say the box had been found empty on Frank Avenue, off Sutton Road.
Carl added: “It makes you so angry that people could do this. Especially because they might have done it for something that might only be a few quid.”
Diane Humphreys, the John Eastwood Hospice trust manager, said: “This is money that people have generously donated tor the benefit of patients in our hospice and we are all appalled by this lack of respect.”
Nottinghamshire Police have confirmed the incident, which took place around 2pm on February 8, was reported to them and are continuing to look into it.
Anybody with information should contact them on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.