Scooter Jacking – coming to a town near you soon | OPINION
We’ve reported on scooter crime in the past. As early as May 2016 we brought you the story of David Babbs and his attack by hammer wielding scooter thieves, David is still recovering from his injuries, both mentally and physically. Since then things have gotten out of hand in the Capital and copycats are already using the same business model in other areas of the UK. With little or no deterrent and a softly, softly approach to policing things are only going to get worse.
Yesterday, 31 year old Max Scarazzini was chased through Manchester and robbed of his black Vespa GTS 300 by four lads riding on two scooters, (possibly Yamaha TMAX/XMax, understandably the victim was a little shook up so can’t be sure). The robbers were all wearing casual clothing and dark crash helmets. We’ve spoken to Max this morning to get some details about what happened.
Max was riding through the Salford area of Manchester at around 2pm yesterday (04/09/2017) when the two dark coloured scooters (both carrying pillions) began to chase him. Max tried to get away by swerving through traffic, continuously beeping his horn and desperately running red lights during the dangerous high-speed pursuit. Once he realised there was no escape he dropped the scooter under a bridge near to a set of new rail tracks in Trinity Way, Salford.
It wasn’t a deserted area, a group of around 10 road workers were stood nearby, in fact five of them were just two metres from where the scooter was dropped. The robbers shouted to them that Max was the scooter thief, a clever distraction technique, and as the robbers picked the GTS up one of them kept coming at Max to keep him away before they made their escape on the three machines.
Luckily for Max he wasn’t injured in the harrowing incident and he ‘only’ lost his scooter but it could have been so much worse. To add insult to injury Max was left at the side of the road for two hours before the police showed up, he’d even tried flagging down passing patrol cars with no success.
Where it happened
The chase started on the A56 (dot A on the image above) and ended where dot B is on Trinity Way. The chase lasted approximately 0.6 miles.
The stolen scooter
Max’s GTS 300, reg number PN15 YSL (pictured top). He bought it in March this year and it had around 2250 miles on the clock. It was fitted with a chrome mudguard protector, front and rear racks, a sports screen and rear crash bars. Have you seen it, or a group of three dark coloured scooters riding together in Manchester since yesterday afternoon? If you’re in the Manchester/Salford area keep your eyes open.
WATCH | This video shows some of the 'Moped' crimes being committed
‘Moped’ enabled crime
A media frenzy into so called ‘Moped enabled crime’ brought this mostly London based phenomenon to the attention of the masses. Lawless youngsters stealing high powered scooters (not mopeds in most cases) and using them to commit thousands of crimes. From muggings to robberies, mobile phone thefts, drug deals, stabbings, acid attacks and even murders.
In our increasingly compensation/blame lead culture the police’s hands are tied to a certain extent. The criminals know that they can’t be chased if they take crash helmets off. The red tape, public inquiry and court case that follows if little Jonny gets injured whilst being pursued by police after attacking/robbing an innocent member of the public isn’t worth the loss of career.
Until the law changes to give power back to the police and the police can actively and forcefully apprehend these villains, then this epidemic will only get worse. As we’ve seen, it’s already spreading to other cities. Lives will be lost, and riders will take the law into their own hands if so called ‘moped-enabled crime’ isn’t stopped very soon. Already delivery riders in London have started to fight back, I’m sure many more are going out armed, just in case they are targeted whilst going about their business.
Let us know what you think
Let us know what you think should be done to halt this crime spree. What should the deterrent be and should using a vehicle to deliberately attack another rider carry a tougher sentence, attempted murder for instance? Should carrying an acid spray (or similar chemical) carry the same sentence as a loaded gun? After all, facial disfigurement is a life sentence for the victim.
Also, thanks to Max for the photo of his scooter.
VIDEO | Join the protest ride September 9th 2017
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