POLICE are hunting thieves who left a disabled resident stranded in his home after stealing his mobility scooter’s battery charger for a second time in a month.
Walter Dods has been left confined to his flat after the culprits made off with his charger sometime between Wednesday night and yesterday morning.
The incident followed the theft of his original charger just four weeks ago. Two pot plants were also stolen from Walter’s garden on the same night.
The 55-year-old, who suffers from crippling arthritis, can only walk for about 100 yards unaided and is unable to get out to do his shopping.
After the last theft he was confined to his home on St Clair Place off Easter Road.
Police have described the theft as a “particularly malicious crime” and have asked anyone who may have witnessed anything that night to get in touch.
Mr Dods, a former administrator at Midlothian Council, said: “I’ve kept the scooter in the stair for three or four years and there have been no problems.
“But on Sunday night four weeks ago I got home from visiting friends to find it had been stolen.
“Unfortunately, there was nothing for the police to go on.”
Mr Dods said the latest crime happened overnight.
He said: “I’d been out with my dog Guinness on Wednesday night and when I got back I plugged the scooter in and went to bed, and in the morning [the charger] was gone.
“For it to happen once is strange but for it to happen twice is very weird.
“Why would someone want my £30 scooter charger? I can’t charge the scooter and I can’t even go out and use the buses.
“They must know they’re stranding me here. I won’t be able to get out to the shops.
“It was four or five days I wasn’t able to get out while the new battery was delivered. I’ve got a few good friends who have been able to help me out and I happened to have quite a bit of food in the house.”
Although Mr Dods no longer works due to his condition, he volunteers several days a week at the Pilmeny Development Project, a community group committed to improving life for Leith residents, and Donaldson Court care home.He added: “I do voluntary work and not being able to get around has restricted me as well.”
A police spokesman said: “This is a particularly malicious crime, which means the man cannot use his mobility scooter to get around unless this charger is returned or replaced.
“Investigations are ongoing to trace whoever is responsible for this mindless act.
“We are appealing for anyone who may have been in the area overnight between Wednesday night and Thursday morning, and who may have seen something suspicious, to contact Lothian and Borders Police on 0131-311 3131.”