THREE thugs armed with an “axe” attacked a man in Pitsea.

The victim, a man in his 20s, was attacked by three men armed what what police believe is either an axe or a pole on Wednesday evening.

The incident took place in Pitsea Road at around 6.30pm and the men ran from the scene.

The victim has not been located and police have been making enquiries to find him without success.

And now councillors have raised concerns that crime is on the up in in the area.

Councillor Luke Mackenzie, Conservative representative for Pitsea South East, said: “Crimes like this are only getting worse, people think there are no consequences to their behaviour.

“We need to send the message that there will be, we need longer prison sentences. Often offenders get a slap on the wrist and then continue to do the same thing.

“The average sentence for knife crime is eight months - this is pathetic.

“These people are dangerous and need locking up. Police are doing their best, but we need to send the message that there will be severe consequences.

“The innocent people and families of Pitsea should be protected, and we need to ensure that that’s happening.”

Basildon Council’s Labour leader, Gavin Callaghan, said: “This is the latest in a growing line of violent crime in Pitsea and in the Basildon borough.

“Unfortunately, police cuts have consequences which are only escalating throughout the area.

“I really do feel sorry for the victim and their family who was affected by the attack.

“People tell me all the time that they feel unsafe in the borough - they’re seeing fewer stations, fewer officers, as a result of the systematic cut backs.

“Something has to be done, now.”

Councillor Jack Ferguson, Labour representative for Pitsea North West, added: “I urge any resident who has any information about what happened to tell the authorities.

“We as a council need to come together with the police and look at what residents in the community need, to prevent this from happening again.”

Call 101 quoting incident 1090 of June 19.