A FREEDOM of Information Request has revealed that no arrests were made in the last year in relation to a series of mobility scooter thefts.

Over the past 12 months, Essex Police received at least 24 reports of stolen disability scooters in Tendring, including six in Clacton and two in Frinton and Walton.

In Clacton, one of the victims was David Dance, 45, of Lake Walk, who lives with bone, muscle and nerve disorders, making it difficult for him to walk unaided.

His treasured form of transport was pinched during the early hours of the morning towards the end of last year, and he only realised once he had woken-up.

Like Mr Dance, Gary Otley, 53, and his partner, Sarah Jones, 49, also had their scooters stolen while they slept in their bungalow in Jaywick.

Elsewhere in the district, Rose Gardener, 73, and Helen Challis, 72, from Walton, had both of their scooters thieved while they held their regular bingo club.

Despite the spate of thefts, a report compiled exclusively for the Gazette by Essex Police, has found that no arrests linked to these crimes have been recorded.

Unfortunately for the victims, the findings also show none of the stolen scooters – which can cost as much as £2,000 - were retrieved or located by officers.

Mr Otley, who suffers with arthritis in both of his knees and also suffers with angina, said he and his partner felt disheartened by the force’s lack of urgency.

“It took more than two weeks after our mobility scooters were stolen for the police to come out and see us,” he said.

“I had to phone the police more than seven times before they actually came over.

“We both felt so let down and it just feels like disabled people don’t matter and are forgotten – it is disgusting.

“When the police did eventually come out to see us, they said they would keep us informed, but we heard nothing.”

Essex Police and the Tendring Community Policing Team have been contacted for comment.