'If you decide to put a window in you MUST be prepared to go to court'
The PSNI is warning people in Derry not to break car windows if they notice an animal inside a vehicle with no ventilation.
The police posted a message on the Foyle PSNI Facebook page on Wednesday afternoon after an initial post by a well meaning member of the public went viral.
The post shared by a member of the public said people were within their rights to break a car window if they came across an animal inside a vehicle no windows down.
The warning comes amid a prolonged spell of warm weather.
"Do not go around smashing car windows in - this is criminal damage," said the PSNI on Facebook.
"If you see a dog inside a vehicle with no windows down, ring the police.
"If you decide to put a window in you MUST be prepared to go to court and defend yourself against the criminal offence of ‘Criminal Damage’. Maybe the Judge will say you were justified - but maybe he won’t."
The PSNI added: "The last thing I want is a load of ‘Good Samaritans’ finding themselves in court because someone jumped out to post a letter and came back with their car smashed in.