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Four Romanians arrested on suspicion of shoplifting

Four Romanians have been arrested on suspicion of carrying out a series of high-value raids across the Midlands Credit: West Midlands Police

Four Romanians have been arrested on suspicion of carrying out a series of high-value raids at retail parks across the Midlands.

The gang's vehicle was picked up by officers on the M5 at junction 1 yesterday. Police on-board Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras suggested the car was linked to organised shoplifting.

Officers followed the gang into a car-park in Birmingham Road, Oldbury, before arresting all the occupants - men aged 21, 24 and 30, plus a 22-year-old woman – on suspicion of theft.

The group are being held in police custody, accused of stealing clothing from a Northampton store.

The arrests were made as part of Operation Trivium, which aims to help officers tackle foreign criminals in the Midlands.

Man drags terrified driver out of smashed window

Kirk Garner, who is wanted by police Credit: West Midlands Police

An Oldbury man is wanted by police after he chased another car at speed through the streets, before ramming into it and dragging the driver out through the window.

Kirk Garner, 34, was racing around the streets of Tipton in his Audi, following a silver Astra last December.

When the Astra stopped at a set of traffic lights, Garner rammed the car, before getting out and smashing the window to drag the driver of the car out.

He began assaulting his victim who managed to escape, but he ran into the path of an oncoming car as he did so.

"This was a particularly nasty attack.

"We believe at this stage that this was not a random attack and that the Astra driver may have been targeted.

"Following our investigations we are now in a position to name Garner.

"Enquiries are on going and we continue to check known addresses for him.

"I would appeal to anyone who has any information of his whereabouts to call me or one of the team on 101."

– Detective Constable Daniel Bailey from West Midlands CID


30-stone man lifted through window of flat by fire crews

Specialist fire crews have had to remove a window from a flat in Oldbury so a 30 stone man could be taken to hospital.

A window had to be removed so the 30 stone man could be taken to hospital Credit: West Midlands Ambulance Service

A hydraulic lift platform was used to lift the man down from his bedroom to an ambulance and firefighters, from the apartment in Rowley Regis, so he could be taken to hospital for an operation.

He was stable with a medical condition but needed to go to hospital. It was impossible to carry him downstairs from the first floor flat. We put him on a specialist stretcher and he was brought down on the hydraulic platform before being taken to hospital in a specially-equipped bariatrics ambulance.”

– Spokeswoman for West Midlands Ambulance Service

Mum's cervical cancer campaign after daughter death

A mother from Oldbury is stepping up her campaign to get the age for cervical cancer screening lowered, after her daughter died from the disease.

A mother from Oldbury is stepping up her campaign to get the age for cervical cancer screening lowered. Credit: ITV News Central

22-year-old Jess Evans died earlier this year.

Routine screenings aren't currently given to women under 25.

22-year-old Jess Evans died earlier this year. Credit: ITV News Central

Jodie Stimpson: 'missing London 2012 was the kick up the backside I needed'

Midlands athlete Jodie Stimpson says missing the Olympic Games was 'the kick up the backside she needed.'

She didn't compete in London 2012 but says it spurred her on to medal victory this year.

She won gold for England in the Women's individual triathlon at the Commonwealth games yesterday.


Drunken man seen walking down M5 motorway

Motorway police in the West Midlands are warning drivers on the M5 to be careful after a drunken male was seen wandering down the carriageway.

Officers tweeted that a male was seen walking between junction 2 for West Bromwich and 1 for Oldbury.

'No more chair' for man walking after nine years

A wheelchair-user of nine years has spoken about his determination to walk again.

Before Shaun Stretton began using the facilities at The Parkway Lifestyle Centre - which opens today - he had not walked for nine years.

Shaun's trainer, Scott Parish, said:

"When he first started, he could literally walk 5 metres, and that was a struggle, wasn't it bud? When we first started to assess you..."

Shaun replied:

"Yeah, yeah, I used to be in a chair. When I was, they said 'Shaun, walking again...?' and I said 'no more chair, I just want to walk again'!"

Centre helps man walk for first time in nine years!

Shaun Stretton had not walked for nine years before he started using facilities at The Portway Lifestyle Centre, in Oldbury, which opens officially today.

Scott Parish, one of the centre's trainers, has been speaking about Shaun's remarkable progress:

"He's done really well, he's walked, I think, now around about 110 metres! And before it was with a frame, but now he's walking pretty much by himself."

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