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94 year old sexually assaulted by taxi driver

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Today (8th November) a taxi driver in Carlisle has been sentenced to two years for sexually assaulting a 94-year-old resident in a retirement property, and fraud.

Richard O’Brien, 58, of Dunmail Dr, Carlisle, is a self-employed taxi driver. He pleaded guilty to three counts of sexual assault and fraud at an earlier hearing.

For years Richard O’Brien marketed his taxi services towards pensioners. He built up a client base from the most vulnerable members of the community; he also transported frail elderly people on behalf of a local charity.

The victim was introduced to him in 2001, when she was living alone, and he ran errands for her. When her care needs became such that she could no longer live independently she moved into a retirement property at Rosebery Road, Carlisle.

O’Brien frequented the property, handing out his business cards and offering his services to other residents. He stated during police interviews that he would ring the intercom of another resident to gain access, and would enter the retirement scheme unbeknown to staff on duty at the time.

The victim reported that almost every time O’Brien visited her at the home he would sexually assault her.

At the beginning of August 2012 a camera was placed within the lounge area of the victim’s flat in relation to another investigation. Within days of its installation Richard O’Brien was caught on camera sexually abusing his 94 year old victim.

It was also discovered that he had fraudulently withdrawn over £4,000 worth of pension payments after the death of his uncle.

DC Carolyn Willacy, from Cumbria Constabulary’s Public Protection Unit, said:

“This kind and gentle lady has suffered regular degrading assaults over a long period of time. Due to frailty of body and mind she was unable to defend herself against his abuse.

“O’Brien pleaded not-guilty until the morning of trial, which caused further distress to those taking part in the trial. There is no excuse for his horrific crimes and the lasting impact they will have on the victim and her family.

“We take all reports of sexual abuse extremely seriously, and work hard to protect vulnerable people. It can be difficult to speak out against abuse, but it’s important that victims and their friends/family get in touch with the police so we can take action.

“If anyone has suffered abuse, or has any concerns, I would urge them to get in touch with Cumbria Police on 101, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

A Cumbria County Council spokesperson, said: “Agencies, including the county council, NHS organisations and the police, work together to safeguard vulnerable adults. The local authority’s safeguarding team worked closely with the police in this instance and we are very pleased that a successful prosecution has been secured.

“These appalling crimes against a frail and elderly lady were exposed as part of the Safeguarding Adults process and followed excellent multi-agency co-operation. This dangerous man has deliberately targeted the most vulnerable people in society causing untold harm and distress while showing no remorse for his actions.”

The family of the victim said:

“How has this left me feeling; Angry, sickened, saddened, vulnerable, ashamed, and broken. My mum has looked after me well all my life and when it was my turn to look after her, I feel I should of done better. I will have to live with that for the rest of my life. To me Richard O’Brien has committed one of the worst crimes possible and I hope he too has to live with the consequences of what he has done for a long time to come.”

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Armed police have ‘shot taxi’ passenger suspected of having handgun

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Armed Police have shot taxi passenger suspected of having handgun, the armed officers shot the man after he refused to get out of the taxi at gunpoint.

Armed officers repeatedly shouted at the man to get out of the taxi, after it was reported he had a handgun.

The suspect suffered a gunshot wound to his arm his condition is non-life threatening after the incident in Bishop Auckland at 10.46am on Friday

Durham Police have confirmed a man in his 20s has been shot by officers who responded to reports of the suspect being seen with a handgun.

A full investigation has now been launched and police forensics have attended the scene of the shooting.

An eyewitness has told @PoliceHour that six armed police cars surrounded a white taxi jumped out and started shouting at a man in the car to get out the man became aggressive and refused he was abusive to police officers and refused to comply

“The taxi driver of the car managed to flee to safety with his armed held in the air before one shot was fired shattering the window, the man was then dragged out by police, despite being in agony he continued to resist police arrest shouting and swearing the armed officers”

“When the ambulance arrived, he became aggressive with ambulances crews and attempted to leave he had to be strapped down”.

Chief inspector Stephen Ball, of Durham Constabulary, said: “Obviously, this is a serious incident and the public would rightly expect a thorough investigation.

“We are fully co-operating with the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

“We believe this to be an isolated incident and we would like to reassure residents that there is no wider threat to the public.

“We would like to thank residents for their support and patience while the investigation continues”.

Durham Police has informed the Independent Office for Police Conduct, which has begun an investigation.

Investigators are due at the scene to carry out “post-incident procedures”.

Durham Police have released a statement “A MAN who was injured during this morning’s incident in Bishop Auckland has now been released from hospital.

“A 23-year-old local man has been arrested and is being held at Darlington Police Station for questioning.”

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Boy 15 Murdered in launched in Sheffield

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A murder investigation has been launched this evening after a 15-year-old boy died in hospital following an incident in the Lowedges area of Sheffield.

Police received reports at around 7.50pm tonight, that a 15-year-old boy had been stabbed on Lowedges Road.

He was taken to hospital where he died an hour later.

Eyewitnesses have told Police Hour they heard a “15-year-old lad had been stabbed, we heard lots of sirens for over an hour.

“Lots of police and ambulance workers ascended into the area and a huge cordon was put in place’

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Policing welcomes Home Secretary Sajid Javid positivity and support offering olive branch in Police Federation address

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The policing world has welcomed the warming and supportive words of new Home Secretary Sajid Javid. We believe he is the first Home Secretary who knows policing.

And thats because it’s in his families blood, he has a lot of great things to say about policing.

An understanding of policing on another level. He knows demand is up, funds are low and the job is tough.

Offering cops the tools they need to get the job done without worrying about stopping and searching suspects.

He has backed an increased use of stop and search to tackle the spate of violence on Britain’s streets.

Sajid Javid speech was received with warmth as he promised to prioritise police spending as he offered an olive branch to rank-and-file officers.

Mr Javid was welcomed to the Police Fed conference and received support from the front line cops following Amber Rudds poor reception last year over budget cuts and staffing reductions.

This was a testing first speech the Home Secretary who wanted to try and draw a line under the era of running battles between the Government and the police.

Following mounting pressures faced by officers faced with policing cuts.

As of September there were 121,929 officers across the 43 territorial forces in England and Wales – a fall of nearly 20,000 compared with a decade earlier.

Referring to stop and search, he told the Police Federation of England and Wales’ (PFEW) annual conference in Birmingham: “Some of you don’t feel comfortable using it – and that’s not how it should be.

“I have confidence in your professional judgment. So let me be clear – I support the use of stop and search.

“You have to do your job and that means protecting everyone.”

He said evidence shows that black people are more likely to be a homicide victim than any other ethnic group.

“If stop and search can mean saving lives from the communities most affected, then of course that has to be right,” Mr Javid said.

Following a spate of violence across London and the UK there has been a sharp reduction in stop and search activity , with use of the powers at the lowest level.

Cops faced heavy criticism after they were accused of unfairly focusing on black and minority ethnic individuals.

Theresa May introduced measures in 2014 to ensure stop and search could not be used in this way.

Mr Javid acknowledged that police officers have an increased demand saying “I’m not arrogant enough to turn up here after three weeks in the job and tell you how to do yours,”

Mr Javid added that the government have had to make difficult decisions since 2010 and that he does not have a magic wand to fund everything needed but he said he was “listening and i do get it”.

“We need to think more about the long-term funding of policing.

“I will priorities police funding in the Spending Review next year.”

He said that, including funds raised through council tax, more than £1 billion extra cash is being invested in policing now than three years ago.

Addressing the fact that he had not spent much time in the role, he said that while the position of Home Secretary was his fifth in Government, he had seen the issues involved in policing and worked with the service during his other roles.

He continued that it was “not all about funding” and the Government needed to do more to “protect the protectors”, such as tougher penalties for those who attack emergency services workers, changing the laws on police pursuits, and updating their kit.

Mr Javid pledged to provide “tools, the powers and the back-up that you need to get the job done…

“For those of you who stand on the front line, be in no doubt that I will be standing with you.”

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