Hero stabbed after tackling thief

A HAVE-a-go hero, who was stabbed in the leg when he frightened a thief trying to steal his neighbour's car, was yesterday described by police as "a knight in shining armour".

By Juliette Maxam

A HAVE-a-go hero, who was stabbed in the leg when he frightened a thief trying to steal his neighbour's car, was yesterday described by police as "a knight in shining armour".

Gary Challis, a security guard, needed hospital treatment after he was stabbed in the leg with a screwdriver by a thief who was trying to break into his neighbour's car in the early hours of Good Friday.

The 6ft 10ins-tall good neighbour was checking the gas meter of his flat in Jubilee Close, Dovercourt, when he spotted a man near his neighbour's car at about 1.30am.


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He challenged the thief and when he tried to run away Mr Challis gave him a "little tap", knocking him against the car. The thief then lunged at him with a screwdriver before running away.

Mr Challis collapsed to the ground with a puncture wound to his thigh. He crawled to the front step and banged on his neighbour's door. His neighbour answered and called the police.

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Mr Challis, who works at Harwich International Port, said he did not think twice about what he did. "I have to deal with that sort of thing daily at work. I'd do it again."

He needed stitches for his wound and was also given a course of strong antibiotics.

Detective Constable Kevin Ford, of Harwich CID, said: "He's a knight in shining armour. He considered the welfare of his neighbour and her property and jumped into action to defend that and he received his injury.

"His actions are commendable, but not to be recommended to everybody."

The would-be thief is described as white, aged 20 to 25, medium build, with short fair hair. He was about 5ft 10ins tall and wore a beige Nike baseball cap.

Det Con Ford appealed for any witnesses or anybody with information to contact Harwich CID on 01255 241312.

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