Saturday, January 12, 2008

Crooks vandalized only car of family living with a visually impaired child

A CAR used to take a baby for specialist therapy has been attacked by thieves.

Danielle Mackenzie, of Madoc Close, Brackla, was distraught after they smashed the window of her Citroen Picasso and stole a laptop computer containing precious photos of her son Bradley.
The 18-month-old is undergoing £4,400 of treatment at the Bobath Centre in Cardiff for cerebral palsy, where therapists are teaching him to sit.

Thieves broke into the car last Thursday night, after 26-year-old Danielle and her husband Richard returned home from the centre and accidentally left their laptop and satellite navigation system inside.

The laptop contained photos of Bradley, who is also visually impaired and has epilepsy, plus posters to help raise money for his treatment.

Following the break-in, the family suffered another blow after discovering the theft of the laptop was not covered by their insurance.

“We went for Bradley’s treatment in Cardiff and we completely forgot about the things in the car,” said Mrs Mackenzie, who is a full-time carer alongside her 37-year-old husband.

“We feel stupid as we never do that, but we were just so tired.

“It’s really annoying. We were up all night with him that night and we didn’t hear it.
“ I felt really horrible that someone had been in the car – it’s an intrusion.

“They don’t know how much damage they have done.”

Mother-of-two Mrs Mackenzie had to ask her parents to take Bradley for his treatment the following day as she and Richard were unable to use the car.

The couple are now trying to get their satellite navigation system replaced, but have been told their laptop will not be replaced by their insurers.

Mrs Mackenzie is particularly upset at the theft of the computer as it contained photos of fundraising events held for her son, including the recent Stand Up for Bradley concert at Bridgend Recreation Centre.

The incident has upset her six-year-old daughter, Jasmine, who is also visually impaired.
“She was crying her eyes out asking, ‘Why did they smash the window?’ It’s gutting.”
Acting Det Insp Richard Jones said: “The circumstances are upsetting and we will look to investigate this matter.”

Anyone with information on the break-in should call (01656) 679528 or CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

l To donate to the Stand up for Bradley appeal, which has Carwyn Jones AM as patron, ring 01656 304921.


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