Edinburgh boy’s stolen birthday bike appeal goes viral

Tom Megaughin-Helder had his bike stolen
Tom Megaughin-Helder had his bike stolen

A mum’s desperate appeal to try and reunite her schoolboy son with his stolen birthday bike has gone viral.

But despite almost a week passing, and almost 9000 views, his prized red ride is still to be found.

That’s despite people posting possible sightings of similar bikes being for sale.

The 43-year-old said: “It was a birthday present and he absolutely loves it - he’s so upset.”

The bike was left in the secure stairwell overnight. But when the family got up on Sunday, it had vanished.

“My husband asked Tom where his bike was and he said it’s there dad but it wasn’t and Tom just started screaming,” said Annette, a holiday flats manager.

The family now fear thieves may have been buzzed in by mistake or the locked door was left open unwittingly.

A frantic door-to-door search has turned up nothing.

Concerned Annette has now posted a video on Facebook of Tom and his bike watched more than 8,000 times - but still no leads.

“There’s a bookies next door but their CCTV doesn’t cover the street,” added Annette.

“The manager of the supermarket nearby also said she’d check their cameras.”

The £150 black and red Apollo CX24 was a perfect present for Tom’s 8th birthday last year and is in “really good condition”, said Annette.

“He loves been out on his bike, playing in the park.

“He was really looking forward to his summer holidays.

“He was really excited because we go out as a family,” said Annette, of husband Andrew, 49, and Tom’s little brother Oscar, five.

“He asked if we could buy him a new one but we had to tell him we can’t just buy a new one.”

The Capital is in the grip of a cycle crime wave.

Thefts afflicting the capital are at a three-year high across the city and thieves becoming evermore emboldened.

There were 2000 cases reported in the nine months up to January alone.

Police Scotland figures show that only five per cent of cases have been cleared up as theives target the easy money.

Seasoned housebreakers are understood to have switched to luxury bikes as rich pickings with lesser penalties if caught than more traditional crimes.

The shift in strategy has prompted Edinburgh’s top cop to pledge a crackdown on thieves amid calls from fed-up riders for bicycle theft to be made a higher priority.

A Police Scotland spokeswoman confirmed the latest incident was being looked at.

A spokesman said: “Police in Edinburgh are investigating following the reported theft of a bicycle from the Leith area.

“The incident happened between 3pm on Saturday 19 May and 9.30am on Sunday 20 May in the Easter Road area. Inquiries are ongoing.”

Anyone with information can contact police on 101, quoting incident number 1760.

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