SICKENING thieves pounced to steal a Dunfermline man’s £5,000 bike as he tended to his injured brother after a horrific cycling fall.

The brother lay stricken with a suspected broken back when two men pounced and seized the bike, which took two years to save up for.

“They could have done anything but they chose the absolute worst thing to do”, the man said.

The pair were cycling with a friend at Glentress downhill when the sibling hit a jump and then a rock which sent him flying over his handlebars.

He slid down a 20-foot embankment covered by rocks which ripped his shirt off and shredded his back, tearing large parts of his skin.

As he had previously sustained a broken back a few years ago, fears were raised he could have done so again and an ambulance was called for immediately.

He is now out of hospital and at home receiving treatment with nurses coming in to apply the dressing for his wounds in what will be a slow recovery.

“Thankfully, by the grace of God, he didn’t sustain any major injuries,” his brother, wishing to remain anonymous, said.

“Most of the skin on the right side of his back is gone and it really was a terrible burn. It was bleeding immediately after and there were some deep scores as some of the rocks he landed on were sharp.

“He previously broke his back so when he fell on it again, there were concerns that it was going to be a fracture to the back.

“After a few CT scans, they can’t find any broken bones so it’s mostly deep tissue damage and the skin being removed from the back. He’s had stitches in his arm as well and he’s obviously bruised too.

“It’s a positive outcome in terms of it not being a broken back but he’s definitely had a scary ordeal with this.”

Panic over his brother’s wellbeing soon turned to disbelief as the man’s bike was stolen from their car by an individual and an accomplice who had been monitoring the incident and were waiting for a time to pounce.

The man explained that, in order to save time, he and his friend were taking the bikes to their vehicle one at a time as the brother was being moved onto a spinal board so they could then help paramedics and follow the ambulance quickly once ready to leave for the hospital. It was only once their backs were turned that the opportunists made off with the £5,000 silver Whyte E-bike 150s.

The man said: “My priority was on my brother and his recovery rather than my bike when the thieves struck.

“It’s been devastating to see my brother in so much pain and then to have this happen during the recovery of him from the mountain.

“When the ambulance came, we knew we would have to lift him up, carry him down to the car park and head to the nearest hospital, which was Borders General Hospital. Because it would take time to put him on the board and then move him, my friend and I decided to utilise this time to take our bikes down so we could quickly follow the ambulance when he had been moved.

“The witness who saw it all happen was sitting in the car park in a camper van with her husband and daughter.

“The daughter, who was only seven, saw my friend and I carrying the medical equipment up to my brother. As soon as we turned our back to go up to the casualty, another van drove right up.

“The witness believes that the men in the van had been watching us and they realised that, after seeing the ambulance, that we would be leaving these bikes unattended for a time. One bike went into the back of the car, my friend came up to put his on the rack and came up again for my one, so that’s when it happened.”

The incident has left him disgusted and angered, with the Lothians & Scottish Borders police division handling the case, which occurred on Sunday, July 26.

“Because I was so concerned about my brother potentially breaking his back and witnessing the fall itself, I didn’t feel the outrage until after it was over,” the brother said. “Instead of looking to help and offer assistance, they instead chose to steal my bike.”

A friend of the brothers has also created an online fundraising page to help cover the costs of replacing the stolen bike: