‘Without my tools, I can’t do my job’

By Kimberley Price

HAYDEN Hocking has had his pride and joy stolen.

Police are investigating after his ute, containing almost $17,000 worth of power tools and equipment, was stolen from his Rochester home and set on fire.

Detective Senior Constable Troy Wickham of Campaspe Criminal Investigation Unit said the silver 2011 GX Landcruiser V8 was stolen from Mr Hocking’s Hotham St driveway at about 3.30am on Sunday, October 28.

The ute, valued at $55,000, was then found burnt out hours later on Burgoin Rd.

Under Mr Hocking’s insurance policy, because his ute was not stolen from his parent’s property, he is now almost $72,000 out of pocket.

The diesel mechanic, 21, purchased his Landcruiser in early December last year.

‘‘I woke up around 3:30am but by the time I’d worked out what had happened it was too late,’’ he said.

‘‘I’m not so worried about the ute as it’s replaceable.

‘‘Though I had just finished paying it off.

‘‘But without my tools, I can’t do my job.

‘‘I worked really hard to build up my tools.’’

The CFA was called but the vehicle was destroyed. The power tools and a small battery-operated crane that were in the ute have not been found. But surprisingly, Hocking’s new UHS was still in the passenger seat in it’s box.

Det Snr Constable Wickham said police were appealing for any information about the crime.

“If anyone saw the car between these hours or knows something about it, I would urge them to come forward,” he said.

Mr Hocking is desperately hoping the perpetrators can be found.

‘‘If anyone has security cameras, can they please check them from around 3am-4:05am on Sunday, October 28,’’ he said.

Police have been able to uncover fingerprints from the vehicle and are hoping they can lead to the thieves.

Anyone with information can contact police on 5483 1500 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.