London Politicians urge Pokémon plod Cops to use Pokemon Go to catch mobile phone thieves

London: It has been suggested cops be stationed near ‘hot spots’ following robbers targeting keen gamers.

COPS should become “Pokémon plod” to catch real-life monsters who target players of the popular mobile phone game, politicians demanded last night.

The calls come after a reported spate of crimes has seen crooks mugging or attacking Pokémon Go players, who travel to real locations to collect items and catch monsters.

Vulnerable victims – many of whom are youngsters – are likely to be distracted while playing and holding their phones out in front of them, and they could be lured or tracked to isolated locations, a Tory warned.

Conservative London Assembly member Steve O’Connell said the Met should station cops near key “PokéStops” locations, that are likely to be used by lots of players.

He told the London Evening Standard: “Lots of people are talking about Pokémon Go. It would be great to see the Met taking advantage of this craze and encouraging community officers to visit popular PokéStops – you could even call them Pokémon plod.

“The game provides a unique opportunity for neighbourhood policing teams to get involved within the community and, at the same time, tag many more phones that could be recovered if lost or stolen.”

A similar trial in South Leicester saw cops tagging players’ mobiles when they were stationed at a busy PokéStop in a park.

Three students were robbed at knifepoint in Manchester earlier this month while chasing virtual monsters around a real park, and Greater Manchester police told cops to be alert to the “potential new crime trend”.

And in America, armed robbers were arrested after using the game to lure victims to an isolated car park in the state of Missouri, a man was stabbed in an isolated spot as he tried to capture a creature in Texas, and a Wyoming teen said she stumbled across a dead body while playing the game.

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