Stolen 4x4 towed from scene of village ram raid
- Credit: Sarah Hussain
Thieves stole a 4x4 to use in a ram raid on a village store before fleeing the scene with a cash machine containing an undisclosed quantity of cash.
Its owner watched from the roadside as his vintage Land Rover was taken away by police investigating the attack on the Budget Store in Outwell, near Downham Market in the early hours of Friday.
Peter Axton, from Wilburton, near Ely, said his vehicle was stolen on Thursday night. He found out it had been used in the raid at 2am on Friday when police knocked on his door.
He went to the scene in Church Terrace, near the centre of the village, in time to see the 4x4 being taken away for forensic examination.
Mr Axton said: "They're [thieves] unstoppable, stealing vehicles for criminal purposes.
"It's my livelihood, I've had it a year, I'm not at work today because I haven't got a vehicle.
"You can see quite a bit of damage to it."
Up to five people, who left the scene, are thought to be involved in the incident.
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He added that he felt sorry for the locals who "woke up to the noise of a cash machine being ripped off a wall".
Mr Axton said: "I heard nothing until police arrived at my house, so I don't feel like I'm a victim, but people around here must do."
Part of the road had been cordoned off as police forensics examined and collected items that had been strewn in front of the store.
The tape also stretched into the grounds of St Clement Church.
One of the cars parked opposite the building was also visibly damaged.
A woman living nearby, who asked not to be named, said: "I have never seen anything like it, not since I've been here and I've been here 12 years.
"It's a mess, a bad thing going on."
Police say the thieves left the scene in a van and a dark coloured vehicle.
Police have been contacted and asked if the incidents are linked.
Anyone who may have witnessed the Outwell incident, has dashcam footage, or may have seen anything suspicious should contact Sgt Andrew Flitney at Swaffham CID on 101 quoting reference number 36/86203/21.
Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers completely anonymously on 0800 555111.