Defibrillator theft ‘a kick in the guts’

Green Island Rugby Football Club manager Gareth Weatherston is upset about the theft of the club...
Green Island Rugby Football Club manager Gareth Weatherston is upset about the theft of the club’s defibrillator. PHOTO: GREGOR RICHARDSON
The theft of a $3000 defibrillator from the Green Island Rugby Football Club is "about as low as it gets", its club manager says.

It was noticed the defibrillator, located at the club entrance alongside a first aid kit, was missing last week after a function, but members estimate it was stolen on October 8 or 9.

Club manager Gareth Weatherston said it was "a kick in the guts" to discover it had been stolen.

"It’s pretty devastating for us ... whose need is greater than one that saves a life?"

The club had received funding through the Foodstuffs Community Trust to get the defibrillator, he said.

"We made the decision to get it for the community in 2018, after an unfortunate death at the club."

Weatherston said the device was available 24/7 for the benefit of the community should anyone suffer a medical emergency, but was useless to anyone else.

"We put it on the outside of the club so it could be widely accessed, we publicised it, we did all that thinking we’re doing a good thing for the community and this has happened."

The club initially thought someone had required use of it, but confirmed it was stolen and had since contacted police.

While it was hoped the defibrillator would be returned, club members were looking at ways to fund a new one, Weatherston said.

"If you’ve got it, bring it back. It’s there to save lives, not a cheap thrill for someone."

emma.perry@odt.co.nz

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