A SOLIHULL teenager is ‘overwhelmed’ after local police presented him with a belated Christmas gift to help him visit his sister in hospital.
Jacob Insull was left struggling to visit his little sister Lana at Birmingham Children’s Hospital after cold-hearted thieves not only stole his bike twice, but also the family’s car with Lana’s specialised wheelchair inside.
But, after hearing the youngster’s plight, police officers from West Midlands Police’s Safer Travel Partnership presented him with a new bike and cycle security goodies to help him visit seven-year-old Lana.
The 13-year-old Arden Academy pupil would often cycle from home to Dorridge railway station in order to see his sister who spends a lot of time in hospital suffering from life-limiting Mitochondrial disease, which means she has epilepsy, severe infections and is unable to communicate.
But when his bike was stolen at the station last summer Jacob faced spending long periods of time alone – unable to visit his sister and mother, who stays by Lana’s side on the ward.
As officers worked on the investigation, they heard about Jacob’s situation and put a gift bag together full of cycle security goodies.
But, when they went to deliver it on January 10, they were told Jacob’s new bike – which his mum had saved up for – had just been stolen from outside his house.
So officers went above-and-beyond to fix the situation.
PC David O’Neill from the Safer Travel Partnership said: “Due to everything Jacob had been through in the past few months, we had a think about what else
“We approached a local company called Cycle Chain, who recycle unclaimed bikes, to see if they could help and they kindly donated a bike, which was delivered to Jacob the next day.
“Jacob is a very special boy; not only does he help out with the day-to-day care of his sister, but he has also raised thousands of pounds for the Lily Foundation, who raise money on behalf of those who suffer from Mitochondrial disease.
“He gives a lot of his time to others and we were horrified to hear that thieves had taken so much from him.
“We hope our actions will go some way to making up for the loss the family has suffered, showing them there are people out there who will rally round in their time of need.”
Ross Jones, 23, of Stretton Road, Shirley, has been charged in connection with stealing Jacob’s bike from Dorridge railway station and is next due to appear before Birmingham Magistrates’ Court on February 14.
No arrests have been made in connection with the second bike or car theft.