Man arrested after truck leaves trail of destruction in Minster by damaging cars, homes and Archie's fish and chip shop
A Minster couple face an uncertain future after a pick-up truck ploughed into their home and business in a wrecking spree last night.
The 4x4 vehicle left a trail of destruction that wreaked havoc throughout the Thanet village at midnight - smashing into cars, walls and buildings.
Kent Police said a man has been arrested on suspicion of taking a vehicle without the owner's consent and is in custody.
Damage to a Toyota pick-up truck that hit several cars, shops and walls in Minster. Picture: Don Wilks
Archie's fish and chip shop owners Ozkan and Sezan Mustafa were in bed in their flat above the High Street shop when the silver Toyota Hilux struck.
Mrs Mustafa, 57, said: "My husband and I had gone to bed and were drifting off to sleep when we heard what sounded like an explosion and then as we looked out of the window and saw a lot of smoke downstairs.
"The noise was unbelievable and there was so much rubble and damage, the whole front of the shop will need to be rebuilt.
"I'm still in shock. It hasn't worn off yet - I can't believe what has happened. The front of the shop has been caved in, it's so lucky that no one was in there at the time."
Archie's fish and chip shop in Minster was wrecked by a car in the early hours. Picture: Chris Davey
The business has been forced to close while damage to the building is assessed and the road was shut while a gas pipe was mended.
Mr and Mrs Mustafa aim to open the doors of Archie's again as soon as possible.
Mrs Mustafa added: "Friends and neighbours are being very supportive. It's such a lovely village that something like this is completely unexpected.
"We're very shaken up and waiting for a structural report on the building to find out what needs to be done. A gas pipe was hit, but that has been made safe.
"Neighbours said that they saw a silver pick-up hit the shop and then speed off, hitting cars along the road."
The vehicle smashed into a garden wall in Minster. Picture: Don Wilks
After smashing into the shop, the vehicle continued down the road - hitting at least four parked cars and leaving a trail of destruction.
The truck stopped after hitting Don Wilks's garden wall towards the bottom of the High Street.
Retired customs officer Mr Wilks said: "It caused about £1,000 of damage to my wall after hitting several cars on the way down the road.
"It's a good job it was at that time of night. If it had been earlier, then there might have been people walking along the street..." - retired customs officer Don Wilks
"I'm amazed it got this far as the rear right wheel had no tyre and the left rear had a puncture. There's a mark made by the wheel rim all the way down the road.
"It seems to have hit my neighbour's wall, hit the kerb on the opposite side of the road and then bounced back into my wall. Eyewitnesses have told me that the driver ran off about half a minute after hitting the wall.
"I was in bed but didn't realise anything had happened until a neighbour banged on my door.
"It's a good job it was at that time of night. If it had been earlier, then there might have been people walking along the street."
Kent Police spokesman Jane Walker said: "Kent Police was called after there were a number of calls from members of the public reporting a silver 4x4 vehicle in collision with parked cars in High Street, Minster.
"It then crashed into front of a fish and chip shop in village. It was reported by witnesses that the driver, who was not believed to have been injured, had left the scene.
"A gas pipe was damaged in the collision and police officers called a gas company and closed the road whilst the pipe was mended.
"A 31-year-old man from the Ramsgate area was arrested at 9.50am today on suspicion of taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent and is in custody at Margate police station."
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