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17/02/2016 11:44 GMT | Updated 17/02/2016 11:59 GMT

Oxford Lush Burglary: Fundraising For Homeless Woman Lottie Suspended After Arrest Of Woman Of No Fixed Abode

A fundraising page for a homeless woman who said she foiled a burglary at Oxford's 'Lush' beauty store has been suspended after police arrested a woman of no fixed abode on suspicion of conspiring to burgle the store.

Police have arrested a 29-year-old woman along with a 42-year-old man.

Lush launched an online fundraising appeal on Saturday for Lottie, who regularly sleeps rough in front of the city centre shop along with her dog Marley, but it has since been suspended. Over £9,000 had been raised, with over 500 people making a donation.

lottie homeless oxford

Lottie and her dog on the steps of 'Lush'

Spokeswoman for Lush, Stephanie Boyd, told the Oxford Mail: “We have paused the fundraising for now, the police recommended it while the investigation is ongoing."

The Cornmarket Street shop was burgled in the early hours of Wednesday last week.

Stories that followed the incident detailed how Lottie had confronted the thief and had secured the return of thousands of pounds worth of stolen property, including a laptop.

In a post on Facebook, the store last week described its employees as a "family" who were left "worried" after they discovered the burglary.

"We want to share what Lottie did with all of you, because we are greatly moved by her selfless actions in protecting us, and want to thank her from the bottom of our hearts," they said.

Lottie was said to have recognised that the man emerging from the shop carrying a handful of items was not delivery or full-time staff.

"She knew that the man walking out of our shop was not us, and she did the extraordinarily brave thing of challenging him. And taking back what was not his; returning a box worth over a thousand pounds back to us," Lush's Oxford branch Facebook page said.

The cosmetics company used the opportunity to blast local cuts to homeless support and services.

homeless protest

The store has a history of campaigning on important issues

"Homeless budgets are continually being cut, services destroyed, in Oxford. There is a dwindling support for vulnerable people and we must fight it," they said.

"There are people who are getting sick and dying on our streets, as we walk by. It is our responsibility to speak out, volunteer, become active in challenging these governmental cuts, and the stigma against homeless people."

In an earlier plea to donors, Lush wrote: "We would love to launch this Go Fund Me page whilst you are all so engaged in Lottie's story, however we must first and foremost bear in mind that Lottie will make her own decision in what she wants and needs from all of this.

"Every single donation will go towards Lottie and homeless charities around Oxford. So please show your amazing support!"

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