A BUILDER chased after thieves who stole his truck...

with six police cars and the force’s helicopter all in tow.

Simon Curtis, 40, of East Road, Mersea, was at home with his family when his daughter heard his truck being stolen.

He and her boyfriend, Mark, raced outside and gave chase.

What followed was a seven-mile pursuit involving the force’s finest. Even the dog unit was drafted in to catch the culprits.

Simon and Mark drove out of Mersea while his partner, Wendy, phoned the police.

They managed to catch up with the stolen Toyota Hilux and by the time they reached Abberton, the police had joined them.

Simon said: “I just shouted follow that truck!

“He was driving on the wrong side of the road, the wrong way around roundabouts, going straight over them, and we were flashing them.”

Eventually, Simon pulled over and left the chase to the police, before the truck was found abandoned on The Willows estate up against a bungalow.

Simon said: “He was swerving all over the place.

“I am really amazed how quickly the police responded.

“We had two cars with us, others at roundabouts, the dog unit and police helicopter and when we got to the truck, there were six police cars around it!”

However, the recovery is not all good news for Mr Curtis, as the truck is now being checked by the forensics team – which means he cannot use it for work.

He said: “I’m a builder and I’m at home when I should be at work, so I feel more anger than relief.

“I knew they wouldn’t let me have it. I just wanted to pick it up.

“Also, the insurance company said it will only give me a courtesy car if it has to be repaired, and not because the police have it.

“So I am stuck at home waiting for the police now and trying to sort out an alternative.”

A spokesman for Essex Police confirmed they gave chase after a Toyota Hilux was stolen from East Road at about 10.15pm on Monday.

l A 19-year-old, from Grays, and 20-year-old, from Stanford-le-Hope, have been arrested on suspicion of theft and have been remanded in custody at Colchester police station.