This is the shocking moment a gang used a forklift truck to rip a cash machine from a Post Office wall in a daring theft.

The gang struck in the rural village of Coggeshall in Essex at around 3.20am on Friday, April 1.

They used the forklift, believed to have been stolen, to rip the ATM from the wall of the Post Office before placing it on the back of a Land Rover Defender.

The four-strong gang can then be seen making their getaway in the vehicles, also believed to have been stolen, leaving the forklift behind.

The woman who took the video, who has asked not be named for fear of reprisals, said: “I was in bed and I thought a car had crashed. The noise was absolutely horrendous.

“Then I looked out of the window and there was forklift taking out the wall of the Post Office. That’s when I ran to call the police.

“After calling the police they asked me to get as many details as I could. They said we need number plates etc just everything you can get.

“That’s when I looked out of the window and tried to get number plates but then I thought why don’t I just film what I was watching.

“It was totally unbelievable and quite scary because I didn’t want them to see me but I wanted to get as much for the police as possible.

“Apparently the two Land Rovers were stolen and one of them has been found with the cash machine on it.

“Apparently it has recently been emptied so they didn’t get much money.

“You can’t see it on the video but they left the forklift to roll back into the estate agents behind. Honestly it was unbelievable.

“My sister was here with me visiting so I got her out of bed and we both stood there in utter disbelief watching it.

“I thought I’d moved to a quite village for a quiet life but obviously not.”

Teenage mother Chantel Glenister was also woken by the noise as the gang carried out the raid just yards away from her first floor flat.

Miss Glenister, 17, said: “I heard strange noises and at first thought it was council workers gritting the road, but I couldn’t believe my eyes when I looked out of the window.

“I was actually woken up by a massive bang and when I opened the curtains I saw three blokes with masks on wrapping a metal chain around the cash machine.

“Then a forklift truck rammed into the building and picked it up. Before I knew it, a burgundy-coloured land rover then reversed underneath and they dropped the ATM onto it and drove off.

“The forklift started rolling down the street and smashed into the estate agents and the opticians opposite.”

Chantel has a six-month-old daughter called Gracie and moved to the village with partner Michael, 27, just six weeks ago.

As concerned villagers and shop owners arrived at work on Friday morning (1/4), they were confronted by a pile of rubble dumped outside the post office, with brickwork and remains of the ATM strewn across the pavement.

A gaping hole in the shop afforded curious passers-by a glimpse into the wrecked village hub.

Chantel’s partner Michael said he phoned police at 3.15am and explained how six police cars rushed to the crime scene within five minutes.

Some of the villagers have seen the funny side of the theft and superimposed a picture of the Hulk stealing stamps over the hole in the wall.

There have been several other thefts of cash machines in the surrounding area over the past few months.

It is unclear at this time if they are linked.

An Essex Police spokeswoman said: “An investigation has been launched after an ATM machine was removed from the wall at the Post office in Market Hill, Coggeshall.

“We were called just before 3.15am this morning with reports of a JCB removing a cash machine from the building.

“Witnesses reported four suspects who had their faces covered. They left the scene in a Land Rover taking the ATM. Anyone with information should contact police on 101.”

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