Norwich mother-of-two “robbed of lifeline” after yobs smash her mobility scooter
06:30 15 August 2012
A woman who suffers from a genetic condition which affects her joints said she has been robbed of her “lifeline” after yobs smashed up her mobility scooter.
Karen Bishop, who has Stickler syndrome, a progressive condition which affects the body’s collagen and can lead to osteoarthritis, left her scooter at Norwich bus station on Saturday lunchtime before joining a friend on a trip to Great Yarmouth.
The mother-of-two, from Foulgers Opening, off Ber Street, Norwich, returned at about 8pm to find her scooter had been vandalised.
She said: “I found it smashed to bits – the whole front of it was in pieces.
“I was absolutely gobsmacked because I didn’t think that would happen where it was – it was in the public eye.”
Mrs Bishop, who had not left the scooter in a bike shed as she could not guarantee she would be back by the time it closed, said she had been left devastated by the incident.
She said: “I’m absolutely gutted.
“It’s my lifeline because it gives me the opportunity to see my kids, my parents and friends and without it they have to come to me.
“I can’t get very far without it.
“I don’t think whoever has done it has realised what they’ve done – they’ve taken my freedom away. I’m stuck indoors without it.”
Karen, who turned 40 on Monday and is on benefits, said she was unlikely to be able to afford to buy another scooter.
She does not even know if she will be able to get it repaired.
She said: “I’m going to have to get someone out to have a look at it but don’t know how much it will cost. I don’t think I’ve got the money to fix it.”
Police are appealing for information after the scooter, which was parked at the side of the YMCA in Winalls Yard, was vandalised sometime between 3pm and 8.10pm on Saturday.
A police spokesman said that someone damaged the control panel, disconnected wires and broke the front lights, leaving the machine unusable.
Anyone who has any information should call police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Have you got a crime story? Call Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email firstname.lastname@example.org