A TEENAGER whose scooter was stolen and dumped is determined to find out what happened to her “pride and joy” — after it was retrieved with a totally new colour design.

Sophie Howarth, aged 18, had her turquoise Vespa LX 50 stolen from a drive in Chapeltown Road, Radcliffe, on Tuesday, February 18.

The Holy Cross student saved up to buy the scooter for her birthday and has taken her compulsory basic training so she can ride on the road.

Sophie launched a social media appeal to find her prized possession and there were several sightings before police recovered the bike from outside flats at the junction of Bolton Road and Lancaster Street in Radcliffe on Friday.

The bike had been “disguised” by crude black and silver spray paint but patches of turquoise were showing through.

Sophie said: “I was at my boyfriend’s house and I left the bike well-hidden between two cars.

“We went inside for 10 minutes to clear some space in the garage, then went back outside and the bike had gone.

“She is my pride and joy.

My sister and I spent days going around looking for her. Now she has been found in this sorry state, I just want to get some justice.”

Sophie praised users of Facebook page Spotted Radcliffe for their “brilliant” response in sharing pictures and telling her of possible sightings across the town.

A police spokeswoman said there had not yet been any response to the appeal which could lead to an arrest or charge and the bike was being forensically tested.

Sophie, whose dad Robert is a custody sergeant with Greater Manchester Police, said: “If anyone knows anything or saw anyone with the bike please let police know, as it may be a place where there was CCTV trained on the area.

“Please come forward so this does not happen again to someone else!”

Anyone with information should call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 and quote crime reference 2647 18th Feb.