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Police hunt Middleton sex attacker

CCTV image of a man police want to trace

Greater Manchester Police say an 18-year-old woman has been sexually assaulted as she walked home in Middleton. It happened around 6pm on Wednesday 19 March.

The woman got off the number 17 bus to Rochdale Interchange at a stop on Rochdale Road.

As she walked on to Cheap Side, a man approached her and made a lewd comment before sexually assaulting her. He walked off in an unknown direction. He is described as being black, in his late teens or early 20s, 5ft 8in tall and clean shaven.

Detective Constable Mark Green said: "The offender boarded the same bus at the same stop in Harpurhey before getting off on Rochdale Road. He then followed her before assaulting her."

"The victim was not physically hurt but has obviously been left shaken by what happened". "We have studied CCTV and are keen to speak to the man in the image. Do you recognise him? If you do, please call us."

Masked robbers ransack jewellers in Middleton

Police are searching for masked robbers who assaulted a shop owner and stole thousands of pounds worth of jewellery in Middleton.

It happened about 4pm on Friday when three men armed with a crowbar and a machete approached a jewellers on Middleton Gardens. They ran inside the shop, one of the offenders pinned the 50-year-old shop owner to the floor while the others ransacked the shop.

They drove off in a grey Toyota Rav 4 which was fitted with false plates. The car was found abandoned a short time later on Woodhill Close in Middleton. All of the men are described as white and in their 20's around 5ft 9in tall.

“This was a nasty robbery which left the shop owner fearing for his life. “These three men burst into his shop armed with a machete and a crowbar and pushed him to the floor while they ransacked his shop and stole thousands of pounds worth of his stock. “I want to reassure the shop owner and the communities of Middleton that we will do everything we can to find these men and bring them to justice. “If you have any information about the robbery or you saw these man driving their getaway car or saw them abandon it on Woodhill Close, please call us ASAP.”

– Detective Constable Daniel Daly


Fusilier Lee Rigby's parents unable to grieve for their son

Ten months after Fusilier Lee Rigby was murdered in Woolwich, his mother says she hasn't been able to grieve because of legal red tape.

Lyn Rigby has been denied any of her son's possessions because his estranged wife was still classified as his next of kin.

They were speaking after a charity helped transform their garden in Middleton, a place they describe as their 'safety zone'.

Driver punched in face after argument

Police are appealing for witnesses, after a man was attacked in Middleton.

It happened on the 24th of February but police are just releasing the details. The victim who was driving on Hollin Lane was dragged out of his car and punched in the face after an argument with the driver and passenger of a VW Caddy Van.

The van driver has been described as white, 30-35-years old, slim build and had teeth missing. He was wearing an orange hi-vis jacket. The passenger in the van has been described as around 27-30-years old, with black hair and a black beard.

This was a violent attack and we want to find the van driver as soon as possible. There are likely to have been quite a few people around at this time in the evening, maybe returning from work that may have seen the two men in the VW van or seen the attack. We are urging anybody who may have any information or recognises the description of the offender to contact us.”

– Detective Constable Michael Berger


Man who bit and strangled girlfriend is jailed

Lee Edwards was jailed for 10 years Credit: GMP

A man who bit, strangled and stamped upon his girlfriend after an argument, has been jailed for 10 years.

Lee Edwards, 29, from Lever Street in Middleton, turned on his partner one night last August. He threw her onto the stairs before punching her so hard he broke her cheek bone.

The thug did not stop there. He bit her face and, as she tried to crawl away, stamped on her neck and back. Then, he tried to strangle her.

Thankfully, she survived. She escaped after he went to sleep.

Pensioner sexually assaulted in her own home

A pensioner was sexually assaulted in her own home by a man who claimed to be a tree-cutter.

The 75-year-old, who is ill and house-bound, was attacked in her warden-controlled bungalow on Tintern Avenue in Middleton on December 14th.

Her attacker knocked on the door and claimed he was cutting down trees. She felt sorry for him and innocently thought he was trying to earn money for Christmas. Feeling charitable, she offered him the chance to help her build some furniture for a small fee and invited him into her home.

However, while inside the bungalow he sexually assaulted her.

He is described as being white, not very tall, in his 30s or 40s and with a round face and stocky build. He was wearing either a black coat with red writing or vice versa and had 'maintenance' or words to that effect on his jacket.

"To sexually assault such an obviously frail and vulnerable pensioner in the sanctity of her own home is completely unforgivable.

"What makes this attack even more disturbing is that the woman is such a kind-natured soul that she thought she was helping someone out over Christmas by putting a few extra quid his way. To therefore have that good nature and trust abused by this man is appalling and we need to find him."

– Detective Constable Dan Daly
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