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MCR Police Reports: 21-27 December

Royal Mail vendetta, women attacked on Deansgate and double Christmas stabbing

Published on December 23rd 2013.

MCR Police Reports: 21-27 December

Friday 27 December: Double stabbing during Christmas fight in Rochdale

Two men, aged 19 and 25, suffered stab wounds on Spotland Road, Rochdale during an attack at 12.15am on Thursday 26 November.

Both men were taken to hospital and remain in a stable condition.

Two men, aged 27 and 42, were arrested on suspicion of assault and remain in police custody for questioning.

Detective Constable Ruth Thompson said: "We believe this incident arose after a dispute amongst this group of people. We are appealing to anyone who may have witnessed this assault or who has any information about what happened and who was involved to contact police."

Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 1707 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


Double stabbing in RochdaleDouble stabbing in Rochdale


Thursday 26 December: Heartless arsonists destroy autistic boy's Christmas surprise

The parents of a 7-year-old austistic boy awoke on Christmas morning to find that the sensory room surprise they had spent weeks building for their son had been destroyed by arsonists on Culmere Road, Woodhouse Park, Wythenshawe.

Over the past few weeks they had kitted out their garden summer house with padded flooring, soft lighting, a digital radio and soft toys for their son to play in. The digital radio and lighting had been stolen before the house was set alight.

Detective Inspector Jane Curran said,"This truly is heartbreaking, the family, like every other family across Greater Manchester, were really looking forward to showing their son his Christmas present when they woke on Christmas Day. Whoever did this really has no morals whatsoever.  

"It is a disgusting and cowardly crime and I really would like anyone who may have seen anything or who has any information about this to contact us.  Thankfully we think that the weather overnight extinguished the fire otherwise we may have been dealing with a much more serious incident yesterday." 

If anyone does have any information they are asked to contact officers on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 

Sunday 22 December: Women targeted on Deansgate

Police are calling for witnesses after two women on their way to work were attacked on Deansgate in the morning of Sunday 22 December.

The first incident took place at around 6.20am near to Beetham Tower when police received reports that there had been an attempted rape. The victim, 26, was on her phone when she was attacked from behind and the offender tried to remove some of her clothing. Luckily she was able to fight him off.

Her attacker was described as white or asian, aged in his mid 20s, around 5ft 6in tall with an average build and wearing a thick black jacket.

A short time later a 32-year-old woman was also on her way to work on Deansgate when she was attacked from behind. A passerby heard her screams and scared the man off. It is not clear whether the motive was robbery or sexual.

He was described as Asian, or possibly white, in his later 20s to early 30s and around 5ft 10in tall. He was wearing a blue hoody with jeans and had a white Samsung phone.

Detective Chief Inspector Linda Reid, of the Public Protection Department, said: "These women have been through horrible experiences this morning as they walked to work. Clearly, the offenders have targeted them because they are on their own at the time.

"At this stage we cannot say whether the incidents are in any way linked, and that is one of the things we are now investigating." 

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. 

Hilton Hotel at Beetham TowerHilton Hotel at Beetham Tower

Saturday 21 December: Man's dangerous grudge against the post office

Iain Merrick, 39, of Cheriton Gardens, Horwich, Bolton, sent a homemade bomb to a post office and publically branded a postman a paedophile during a long-running personal vendetta against Royal Mail.

After complaining that his post was being delivered to the wrong house and inciting a number of altercations with post office staff, Merrick's grudge turned nasty.

In April 2011 a postal worker opened the post box outside the Winter Hey Lane Post Office, Horwich, where they discovered a small brown package that turned out to be an improvised explosive device (IED) containing razor blades and fish hooks.

Following forensic examination the package was found to contain traces of Iain Merrick's DNA.

Around a month later a number of white stickers labelling a local Horwich postman a paedophile were found stuck around various spots in Horwich.

Merrick began a campaign against the post officeMerrick began a campaign against the post office

Later that year in October and November 2011, six local primary schools contacted police to report that they'd been sent indecent images of children in the post with the personal details of two post office employees written on the back.

Iain Merrick was found guilty of 22 offences. Seventeen counts of making indecent photographs of a child, four offences of distribution of an indecent image of a child and placing an explosive substance in a postbox with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, following a two week trial at Manchester Crown Court.

Detective Sergeant Russ Stubbs, of the North West Counter Terrorism Unit said: 'Merrick waged a one-man crusade against the post office, a one-sided conflict that seems to have been ignited by the tiniest of sparks.

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