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CCTV extraordinary lengths a desperate thief went to in order to rob a post office

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Detectives have released CCTV that shows the extraordinary lengths a desperate thief went to in order to rob a post office in Oldham. 

In what is believed to have been an act of desperation on Christmas Eve, the thief targeted the Watchcote Post Office on Oldham Road in Failsworth at about 11am. 

He went into the Post Office and initially demanded money from the staff working behind the counter. 

He made efforts to open a secure door and then picked up a National Lottery ticket stand and flung it towards the glass screen in an attempt to shatter the glass and get behind the counter.

After failing to smash the screen, the thief forcibly removed the ceiling tiles and climbed through the gap in the ceiling into the secure area, where he stole some cash. 

He is described as being white, of a pale complexion, about 6ft tall, of a slim build and in his 20s. He was also said to have wide, pale blue eyes and was wearing a black woollen balaclava, blue tracksuit and thick black gloves. 

Officers also believe the man was pacing about outside the Post Office prior to the robbery and made several comments about his financial position, including comments about not being able to buy Christmas presents for children and something else along the lines of “I have no money, may as well do the Post Office”. 

Detective Constable Tony Anwas said: “This CCTV paints perfectly the picture of just how desperate this man was to get his hands on some cash. 

“I believe he has made a spur of the moment decision to rob the Post Office, and has executed his plan in a rushed and ham-fisted manner. 

“We believe he was pacing about beforehand and making several comments about his dire financial position and inability to afford Christmas gifts. 

“If you were outside and saw or spoke to this person we really need to hear from you. 

“We also need to hear from anyone who knows who the person responsible is or who, having viewed the CCTV, recognises someone from the build of the man, the way he has walked or the clothing worn.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestopppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111. 

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Dangerous prisoner fails to return after attending family funeral

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Police are appealing for help in tracing a Hollesley Bay prisoner who has absconded.

34-year-old Aaron Johnson was reported missing to police at 11.15pm  last night, Friday 17 August,.

Johnson had been granted a special purpose temporary licence to attend a funeral yesterday but failed to return to the prison as arranged. He was last seen in West London.

Johnson is serving a 9 year sentence for robbery, wounding and assault.

He is described as black, 6 feet tall, of medium build, and had a beard. He was wearing a black jacket,  blue jeans, white t-shirt and trainers.

Members of the public are advised not to approach him.

Anyone who believes they may have seen Aaron Johnson or who has any information regarding his whereabouts, is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 101 quoting CAD 480 of 17 August.

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Scott Findlay subjected young mother to harrowing sex attack & punched her while she cradled 6-week-old baby

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A MAN who raped a young mother and repeatedly punched her as she cradled a six-week-old baby in her arms has been jailed.

Scott Findlay subjected his victim to a “prolonged and harrowing” attack in front of her two young children.

Today, at York Crown Court, Judge Simon Hickey sent the 27-year-old, from Ferryhill, in County Durham, to prison for 15 years for offences including rape, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and threats to kill.

The court heard that the victim pleaded with Findlay, who was armed with a kitchen knife, for her children to be prevented from seeing the attack.

Speaking after sentencing, Detective Constable Katrina Meisuria, of Durham Constabulary’s Safeguarding Unit, praised the victim for her courage in giving evidence.

She said: “Scott Findlay subjected his victim to a prolonged, harrowing and violent attack in front of her two young children.

“It took great bravery by the victim to provide evidence at court reliving those events again.

“There is no doubt these crimes have had a life-changing effect on the victim and her children, but the conviction will provide the family with the opportunity to move forward”.

In a statement released through the police, the victim said: “This has been an extremely difficult time for me and my family.

“The incidents occurred only six weeks after the birth of my daughter who was in my arms as Scott Finlay repeatedly punched me about the head and my seven-year-old looked on in terror begging for him to stop hurting his mammy.

“No child should ever have to witness such an attack”.

She added: “My family and I are pleased with the outcome and relieved it is finally over and we can move forward to rebuilding our life”.

After a four-day trial at Durham Crown Court in May, a jury found Findlay guilty of three counts of rape, one count of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and one count of making threats to kill.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and criminal damage.

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Man attacked staff with a traffic cone at petrol station

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Police are appealing for information after a man was assaulted with a traffic cone at a petrol station in Newcastle.

At around 12.05pm on Monday afternoon police received a report that a staff member at the Shell garage on the Great North Road in Gosforth had been assaulted with a traffic cone.

The male offender had filled up a motorcycle with fuel but was challenged by staff when it appeared that he would not pay for the fuel.

He became aggressive and then assaulted the staff member with a traffic cone before fleeing the scene on foot in the direction of The Three Mile Inn.

The victim of the assault was later taken to hospital with a suspected broken nose and cheekbone. It is also believed the motorcycle the offender left at the garage was stolen.

Enquiries into the incident are ongoing and police are now appealing for help from the public to identify the offender.

He is described as wearing all black with a white motorcycle helmet that had the visor down.

Officers also want to speak to any witnesses to the incident as there were a number of people on the garage forecourt who police have still not spoken to.

They are also keen to speak to any motorists who may have dash-cam footage showing the motorcycle in question.

Anyone who knows the man, or witnessed the incident on Monday, is encouraged to contact police on 101 quoting log 423 13/08/18 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

You can also email the OIC on [email protected] or report online at www.northumbria.police.uk/contact.

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