Police are investigating a vandalism attack on a locally-funded defibrillator in Kirriemuir.
The equipment, which can prove vital in heart attack situations, is housed in a box outside the police office. The outer panel was vandalised.
The defibrillator itself was undamaged, but the attack on the bright yellow cabinet means it has been moved indoors until the necessary repairs are carried out.
The incident happened before 6.15pm on Wednesday.
Kirriemuir Conservative councillor Angus Macmillan Douglas said: “These defibrillators are put there to help people in a major emergency and it is incredibly anti-social behaviour that somebody should vandalise them.
“What people are actually doing is endangering human life.
“You turn to these things in an emergency – you don’t know when it’s going to happen – and the last thing you need is to find that it has been vandalised and doesn’t work.”
The automated external defibrillator (AED) can give an electric shock to the heart through the chest wall of someone who is in cardiac arrest.
The equipment was put in place in 2016 through the work of Kirriemuir Community Council.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “While this has happened outside the police office, this office is not permanently staffed.
“Local CCTV is currently being reviewed.
“Fortunately the defibrillator itself was undamaged, but the damage to its housing means that it has needed to be re-located to the kiosk within the Co-Op shop nearby in Roods until the necessary repairs have been carried out.
“This obviously has the potential to have significant consequences should someone require the defibrillator outwith usual opening hours for the Co-Op, which are 6am to 11pm daily.
“If you have any information which could assist our enquiries, please call 101 or speak with any police officer.
“Also, information can be given anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555111”.
The incident happened almost a year after the locally-funded machine in Kirriemuir’s Reform Street was damaged and put out of 24-hour availability.
A spokesperson for Kirriemuir Community Council said: “We are unsure when the damaged was done it may have been over the weekend or before.
“Until the cabinet is repaired our very friendly Co-Op in the Roods are looking after the defibrillator.
“Big thanks to the police who removed the defibrillator and kept it safe and to the Coop for providing a safe home for the life-saving equipment until the cabinet is repaired.”