The Selsdon policeman mown down by a scooter has revealed his wife was also the victim of a hit and run accident.

Sergeant Alec Stow's wife Jill was left partially disabled from the injuries she received in the accident, which happened many years ago.

Ironically, Jill is now caring for 52-year-old Alec at their West Sussex home after he sustained terrible leg injuries in his own hit and run smash on November 21.

Alec, of the Selsdon and Ballards safer neighbourhood team, is now facing painful surgery to rebuild his knee and is not expected to return to work until July next year. His injuries are so bad he may not be able to return to community beat work and might have to take a desk job.

He told the Croydon Guardian: "I was released from hospital on Saturday and the main thing for me at the moment is trying to cope with the tremendous pain I'm in.

"I've never experienced anything like it, it's agony. It's like red hot swords being twisted into me.

"I had my first operation last Monday but I will need more surgery. I will probably need some sort of walking aid and I am suffering with dizziness.

"I don't remember much about the accident but I've not experienced anything like this in my 28 years in the police force.

"A scooter was turned into a lethal, mechanical weapon in a matter of seconds and it's a horrible indictment of today's youth.

"However I would like to highlight that during the accident another 14-year-old lad held my hand for 45 minutes. I would like to thank him for his kindness."

Alec had been standing his ground' against nuisance scooter riders when he was hit by one of two bikers who ignored orders to stop in Addington Road.

Police said it is unclear how many bikes were at the scene but officers believe riders may have been racing each other.

The bike involved in the collision, which has not yet been recovered, is a Gilera Runner 125 scooter, reg V727 LGJ, which is blue or black with silver sections. It is also very loud. Police want to hear from anyone who has seen the vehicle.

Despite Alec's terrible injuries he still believes gangs and the associated antisocial behaviour can be eliminated by encouraging youths to get involved in clubs and activity schemes.

He added: "They get acceptance from gangs and we need to find a way for them to get that same feeling from other sources.

"This Christmas is going to be quite hard really. Any shopping we hope to do will very much be down to the good will of our neighbours.

"I believe this bike is in storage somewhere, I don't think it's been destroyed. Someone must know where it is."

Contact Detective Sergeant James Hallums on 020 8649 0258 or email Alternatively, call Crimestoppers, free and anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Three youths were arrested in connection with the incident. They were taken to a south London police station and later bailed to return in January pending further enquiries.