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  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

South-East midwives go on strike

Hundreds of thousands of health workers walked out on strike this morning, many for the first time in their lives, in protest at the Government's decision not to give them a recommended 1% pay rise.

Midwives, nurses, paramedics, ambulance staff, and hospital porters and cleaners mounted picket lines across England from 7am for four hours.

David Johns reports, speaking to Clare Morris from the Royal College of Midwives; midwife Gabby Dowds-Quinn; and independent midwife Virginia Howes.

Dartford tunnels to be redesigned as part of 'complicated' scheme

The Highways Agency said that the full benefit of the changes will only be felt when the toll booths are removed.

Dart Charge Project Director Nigel Gray said: "We will get underway on this work at the same time that the new payment arrangements begin. It's complicated work - especially on the northbound carriageway, where we need to protect the tunnels - one of which was built in the 1960s and has a lower height restriction - from over-height vehicles.

"We’ll be completely redesigning the approach to the tunnels to detect and turn around these vehicles and other vehicles not suitable for the tunnels, using a system of signals, barriers and extra lanes, while keeping all other traffic flowing as much as possible.”


Lane chaos scrapped as Dartford tolls removed

How the Dartford Crossing looks now Credit: Highways Agency
How the Dartford Crossing will look when the toll booths are removed Credit: Highways Agency

The Highways Agency has released images of how the Dartford Crossing will look when the toll booths are removed.

The current 27-lane system will be removed by four open lanes in each direction.

Work to remove the toll booths will coincide with Dart Charge - a remote charging system - going live in late November. The scheme is expected to be complete by next spring.

Man jailed for stealing from housemate

A man who stole his housemate’s bank card and used it to withdraw cash from her account has been jailed for 22 months.

Oluwafemi Jaiyesimi, 27, formerly of Fulwich Road, Dartford, entered his victim’s bedroom and rummaged through her belongings while she was out, using the PIN he discovered to access her funds.

The offences were committed between Thursday 17 July and Monday 21 July 2014.

Jaiyesimi was arrested after CCTV footage and online accounts proved he had withdrawn money from a cash machine and set up payments to benefit himself.

Police also discovered he was in possession of a false driving licence.

Jaiyesimi pleaded guilty to one count of burglary, one count of theft, six counts of fraud and one count of intending to use a false ID, and was sentenced to 22 months’ imprisonment when he appeared at Maidstone Crown Court on Monday 6 October.

"Jaiyesimi abused the trust that existed with his housemate by stealing her personal belongings for his own financial gain. He thought he was untraceable and even on arrest tried to persuade police he was someone else using his false identity details. I am pleased he has been sentenced appropriately and we have referred his case to the Home Office for him to be considered for deportation at the end of his term. This case highlights the importance of keeping bank cards safe at all times, and of ensuring that if you must keep a reminder of your PIN that it is kept in a secure location. Remember to report lost or stolen cards immediately, and to keep a note of the emergency numbers you should call."

– Detective Constable Richard Olley

Horse's tail cut off at disabled riding centre

Kent Police is appealing for information after a horse’s tail was cut off at a riding centre for disabled people.

Two other horses had hair removed from their tails and two horse rugs were also stolen, sometime between last night and this morning.

The incident occurred on fields at the Arrow Riding Centre for the Disabled in Darenth Park Avenue, Dartford.

Mother issues drugs warning after son left unconscious

A traumatised mother has released harrowing pictures of her son lying unconscious in a hospital bed after he collapsed at a nightclub in Dartford. 18 year old Jack McEwan was taken seriously ill after drinking in the Crush Club. He believes he had his drink spiked with Ketamine, but has no idea why. Andrea Thomas reports.


Sex offender jailed for nineteen years

Enrico Thor Korsche has been jailed for nineteen years Credit: Kent Police

A child molester has been jailed for 19 years after he was convicted of a string of sexual offences.

Enrico Thor Korsche, 57, of no fixed address, was imprisoned by a judge at Maidstone Crown Court on 16 September after he was found guilty of three offences of rape, six counts of indecent assault and one of indecency with a child.

The offences took place in Swanscombe between 1999 and 2006. Korsche targeted two young girls, one who was just two years old when the abuse began, and repeatedly assaulted them.

His crimes only came to light in 2011 when one of the victims confided in her teaching assistant that she thought she had been abused when she was younger.

During the investigation into these offences, the second victim came forward and said she too was abused by Korsche. However, Korsche had fled the county and police forces around the UK were put on alert.

Korsche was arrested in Aberdeenshire in October 2013 after local officers were made aware that a man was walking along a dual carriageway. When he gave his name to patrols, it triggered an alert on the national database that he was wanted for serious sexual offences

"Korsche's crimes spanned several years and have had a serious impact on the wellbeing of both victims. They were exposed to this depravity at a young age and as a consequence have been through a tremendous amount of emotional pain. However, despite their ordeal, both victims were brave enough to assist us with our investigations and strong enough to give evidence to the court after Korsche flatly denied committing these crimes. I would like to pay tribute to them for their courage and hope they can begin to move forward with their lives now their abuser is behind bars. As for Korsche, I welcome the news that he will be in jail for the foreseeable future. He has shown absolutely no remorse for his calculated behaviour and utter abuse of his victims' trust and I am pleased justice has been served."

– Investigating officer, DC Steve Dingwall of Kent Police

Police appeal for witnesses after fatal crash in Dartford

Kent Police are appealing for witnesses after a fatal crash in Dartford.

A pedestrian, thought to be in his 80's, is reported to have been hit by a car on Park Road.

Sadly, he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the car was taken to Darent Valley Hospital with minor injuries.

Detective Sergeant Scott Lynch, of the Serious Collision Investigation Unit at Kent Police said, ‘I would urge anyone who witnessed the collision and has not yet spoken to an officer to get in touch as you might have information that could help with our investigation.

"I would also ask anyone who saw the car or the man, who was described as using a walking stick and wearing a flat cap, prior to the collision to contact the Serious Collision Investigation Unit.’

Any witnesses should contact DS Scott Lynch on 01622 798538.

Missing woman found safe and well

A missing woman from the Dartford area has been found safe and well following a search by Kent Police officers.

Sarah Rothery was last seen at Darent Valley Hospital at 3am yesterday morning where she was due to be treated for an injury to her arm.

Kent Police said she has now been located and they would like to thank all those who assisted with the search.

Have you seen missing Dartford woman Sarah?

Sarah Rothery was last seen at Darenth Valley Hospital at 3am this morning Credit: Kent Police

Kent Police are asking for the public's help in trying to find a vulnerable missing woman from Dartford.

Sarah Rothery was last seen at Darenth Valley Hospital at 3am this Saturday morning where she was due to be treated for an injury to her arm.

It is thought she left hospital without getting treatment and officers are concerned for her welfare.

The 47-year-old has been described as white, of slim build and with brown eyes.

The hospital's CCTV caught her last known movements, showing her to be wearing a black tracksuit jacket, with a white top, black jeans and white shoes.

CCTV from the hospital where Sarah was last seen Credit: Kent Police

Anyone who knows where Sarah might be is asked to call Kent Police on 101, quoting 21-0201.

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