Category Archives: Crime

Police cordon off roads in Cleveleys town centre due to ongoing public disorder incident on Nutter Road

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Police are urging people to keep clear of the area.

Police are currently dealing with an ongoing public order incident on Nutter Road in Cleveleys, meaning that numerous roads in the area have been cordoned off.

In a statement posted to both Facebook and Twitter at 3:30 pm, Wyre Police confirmed that road closures are currently in place on Nutter Road itself and Rough Lea Road.

They added that whilst there are numerous patrols in the area, they believe here is “no risk to the wider public”.

Wyre Police confirmed that there is an ongoing police incident on Nutter Road, Cleveleys.

Wyre Police confirmed that there is an ongoing police incident on Nutter Road, Cleveleys.

Speaking to the Gazette an hour later, a police spokesperson said: “We were called at 1.07pm today (January 26) to a public order incident in Nutter Road, Thornton Cleveleys. Officers remain at the scene. The public are asked to avoid the area.”

According to reports, and footage posted online, the incident involves somebody throwing furniture out of a building, and both the fire service and armed riot police are in attendance.

More information to follow.

 

Police want to speak with this woman after attack on tram in Fleetwood

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Do you recognise this woman?

 

Police are appealing for information to help identify her in connection with an assault in Fleetwood.

A Lancashire Police spokesman said: “Close to midnight on September 25, the victim, a woman in her 60s, was on board a tram at the Fleetwood Ferry stop.

“The offender, another woman, had got off the tram before running back on board, punching the victim to the head and knocking her to the ground.

Police want to speak to this woman after an attack on a tram in Fleetwood

Police want to speak to this woman after an attack on a tram in Fleetwood

“The victim suffered minor injuries and was treated by paramedics.

“Following CCTV enquiries we want to speak to this woman, pictured, in connection with the attack.”

If you recognise her, or can help the police with their enquiries, please call 101 or email 2061@lancashire.police.uk quoting log 0004 of September 26.

 

 

Fleetwood man arrested in dawn raid after suspected arson attack in Thornton

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Detectives investigating arson and other violent crimes in Fleetwood have made an arrest today (Tuesday, January 18).

 

A 37-year-old man from Fleetwood was arrested on suspicion of assault (GBH), criminal damage and arson endangering life.

He was arrested after police raided homes in Poulton Road and Chatsworth Avenue in Fleetwood, as well as Allen Close in Cleveleys, this morning.

Lancashire Police said the raids were in response to recent incidents including a suspected arson attack at a home in Mill Close, Thornton, in November. No one was injured in the arson attack.

“Earlier this morning officers searched addresses in Poulton Road and Chatsworth Avenue, Fleetwood, as well as Allen Close in Cleveleys.

“The activity follows recent incidents including a suspected arson attack at a property in Mill Close, Thornton, in November.

“A 37-year-old man from Fleetwood was arrested on suspicion of assault – GBH and criminal damage and arson endangering life. He is currently in custody.”

If you are concerned by criminal activity in your area, you can call police on 101. In an emergency call 999.

Anonymous information can be provided through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

 

 

Police officer searched friends on database and leaked private info on WhatsApp group

LancsLive - Latest news, sport, business and more from Lancashire

Connor McHugh accessed the police database to search the personal information of 15 people

 

Connor McHugh pictured leaving Leyland Police Station
Connor McHugh pictured leaving Leyland Police Station (Image: James Maloney/LancsLive)

A police officer has been sacked after he wrongfully accessed police databases and sent private details of up to 15 people to a WhatsApp group.

Connor McHugh was still in training when he made searches of various “friends and acquaintances” during his first shift at Blackpool police station.

Over the course of that night and morning in June 2020, he accessed multiple people’s records and then posted information into a WhatsApp group containing three of his friends.

He continued to do so over the coming weeks before no longer having access when he returned to the remote training which became standard during the pandemic.

Upon his return months later, he seemingly had stopped the accessing the databases in improper ways but made another search in January at the request of a family member who was concerned about a colleague’s son.

An anonymous complaint was eventually registered with Lancashire Constabulary and when interviewed, McHugh answered no questions but gave a prepared statement admitting he had accessed the databases and then disclosed information to third parties.

He also apologised and accepted this amounted to gross misconduct and went before a misconduct hearing at Leyland Police Station today.

Leyland Police Station
Leyland Police Station (Image: James Maloney/LancsLive)

Overseen by Chief Constable Rowley, the hearing was held to decide what punishment would be appropriate, with options ranging from a warning to dismissal.

Outlining the case against McHugh, Victoria Von Wachter explained that the impact of the misconduct was not just on the people involved, but also on the public perception of the force.

She said: “This is not an opportunity just to punish an officer for wrongdoing, that may be an outcome, but the primary purpose is to ensure the confidence of the public they serve that should be treated accordingly.”

Ms Von Wachter pointed out that in his written statement, McHugh gave the names of six people whose information he had accessed but an audit revealed the number was actually 15. This, she said, was either evidence that he did not consider the incident serious enough to fully remember or suggested he was trying to hide the full scale of his misconduct.

She said: “We have here an officer who has behaved in a way that would cause the public to not only lose confidence in him but also question the probity and reliability of the police force in general.

“It would be easy to dismiss this as the peccadillo of a foolish young officer. However, it goes much further than that.

“This is an adult, a graduate, who has chosen to use the police database for his own intentions.

“Moreover, he has chosen to disclose the information to a WhatsApp group and we have no knowledge of whether information has been disseminated further.”

By the time the complaint was made and McHugh’s phone handed over for investigation, the WhatsApp group had been deleted. The disgraced officer did however ask that no-one in the group share the information further once the investigation was launched.

Speaking on behalf of McHugh, James Bourne-Arden disputed that the officer had been anything other than forthright and honest, arguing his omission of the names of some of the people whose details he search was understandable given it had taken place seven months earlier.

The barrister argued that a final written warning could be an appropriate punishment under Home Office guidance, particularly as it could be allowed to last for a five year period.

Connor McHugh
Connor McHugh (Image: James Maloney/LancsLive)

He said that despite his early “naivety”, McHugh had character references from other officers who described him as “eager to learn with the right attitude to be a good police officer”, “thoughtful and diligent” and someone “who strives to improve every day”.

Mr Bourne-Arden said that McHugh wanted to be a police officer for a long time after being inspired by his auntie, and was also a talented sportsman who represented Lancashire at rugby, football, cricket and boxing but had his progress halted by a knee injury,

He added: “Through me, he urges you to give him a second chance, in light of his early admissions, in light of his good work.

“I submit that through a final written warning lasting up to five years, the public confidence can be maintained in that should he be minded to do something as stupid again, that will be it. There will be no other chance.”

But Ch Con Rowley disagreed that a final warning would suffice and dismissed McHugh from his role.

He told the former officer that the decision was necessary to protect public confidence in policing, adding: “It give me no pleasure taking away what could have been a promising career for someone who had long had a passion for policing.”

McHugh was also added to the College of Policing barred list.

 

 

Mystery death of sheep in Garstang

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Police are reminding dog walkers to keep dogs on leads when walking across farmland after several sheep were found dead in a field near the centre of Garstang.

The bodies of the sheep were spotted near the old railway embankment by a passer-by.

Garstang and Over Wyre Police issued a statement on Facebook yesterday saying: “The Rural Task Force at Garstang will be paying attention to this area if you notice an increase in police presence.”

The statement advised: “We have received reports of a number of sheep being located sadly deceased on farmland off the old railway embankment footpath in Garstang. Please be aware that when walking on footpaths across farmland, especially when livestock are grazing, dogs should always be on a lead.”

The Rural Police team is set to increase its presence in the Garstang area

The Rural Police team is set to increase its presence in the Garstang area

It is not yet known what caused the death of the animals. They were found on land near the old Pilling Pig railway track which belongs to the Miller family of Lower Lingart Farm, Barnacre, but the sheep did not belong to them.

It is understood there were no marks on the sheep and it is thought they may have been chased and died of shock.

 

Lancashire Police warn people to be wary of romance fraudsters in run up to Valentine’s

Home | Blackpool Gazette

The force says that online daters are particularly vulnerable this time of year.

 

Lancashire Police have issued a warning this week about ‘romance fraudsters’ in the run up to Valentine’s Day, as last year saw the annual number of incidents increase by nearly 30%.

Posting on both their Facebook and Twitter accounts, the force urged people to be wary of these fraudsters, who gain their victims’ trust before asking for money for a variety of emotive reasons.

According to the police, daters striking up online romances between Christmas and Valentine’s Day tend to be more susceptive to romance fraud, and they ask people to think carefully before parting with any money.

There are plenty of resources about how to keep safe on the Lancashire Police and Action Fraud websites.

There are plenty of resources about how to keep safe on the Lancashire Police and Action Fraud websites.

A spokesperson for Lancashire Police told the Post: “Romance fraud or dating fraud as it’s also known, is an incredibly sophisticated crime, which has devastating impacts on victims, both financially and emotionally. It is a crime that we are committed to tackling with help from key partners and we want to empower people to understand what to look out for to protect themselves and their money online.

“Victims often blame themselves but these criminals are experts at impersonating people. If anyone has met someone online, that they suspect isn’t genuine, they should speak to their family and friends and most importantly report it immediately. For advice on how to spot the signs and how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud, please visit Action Fraud’s website at actionfraud.police.uk.”

Across the country, between November 2020 and October 2021, there was 8,863 cases of romance fraud reported, with losses totalling £91.9 million- nearly 2000 more cases than there were in the 12 months before.

Last year, Lancashire Police ran a campaign called #LoveNotLies highlighting the seriousness of romance fraud, and featuring case studies of those who had been affected.

One victim in her 60s, who has been named Sandra, had began online dating in search for someone to spend her retirement with after a breakup from her partner, but within weeks she had been scammed out of thousands of pounds by a romance fraudster.

Sandra, who was duped by a “romantic” charmer called Jeremy, said: “I was taken in because I had let my guard down, I was quite vulnerable during that time and the man I met took complete advantage of that.

“I think of myself as an intelligent woman and I am naturally suspicious so I never for a moment thought that I would be scammed in the way that I was, but I was.”

A few days before the couple were planning on meeting for the first time, Jeremy rang frantically and told an elaborate lie, which involved having to go to Ghana in place of his friend who had been building a hospital there.

It was when he had apparently arrived in Ghana that the requests for money began, starting with just £20 to top up his pay as you go mobile phone, but the requests soon became hundreds, and even thousands, followed with stories about how his friend had let him down over missed payments for the ‘hospital build.’

The final requests were supposedly to cover medical bills and a flight back to the UK after he had been in a car accident, but it was when Jeremy failed to call following his supposed landing, that Sandra realised it had all been a scam and she “felt like the bottom of [her] world had fallen out.”

Sandra added: “I would urge anyone who goes online to meet someone like I did to please be mindful if you are asked to quickly leave the dating platform and go onto your own phone numbers. If you meet someone genuine they will happily stay on the dating app as they will have nothing to hide.

“Another thing which should have been a warning sign but I didn’t pick up on it is that we never had a video call and so when I look back I never had any proof that he was actually who he said he was.”

Offering their own advice, Lancashire Police urged people on Facebook “Don’t let your heart rule your head” as they give tips on how to protect those who are online dating. These were:

-Make sure the security settings on social media accounts are turned on, to stop strangers accessing personal info.

-Stay in regular contact with those who are online dating to help spot any changes in behaviour or things that don’t seem right.

-Make friends and family aware of the signs of romance fraud so that they know about the tactics criminals use to carry out these scams and reiterate that you should never transfer money to someone that you have never met in person.

-Encourage people to report to Action Fraud and the police if they have become a victim of romance fraud and not to be embarrassed about doing so.

If you are suspicious about someone or you think someone has become a victim, you can report it to Action Fraud here.

 

 

Ex-Blackpool FC striker Lee Thorpe denies assaulting doormen at Trilogy bar

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A former Blackpool FC footballer has made his first appearance at court charged with two assaults.

 

Lee Thorpe, 45, who played as a striker in an 18-year career as a professional is charged with assaulting two club doormen at Blackpool’s Trilogy bar on July 31, 2021.

He appeared before Blackpool Magistrates alongside a co accused Calum Holmes, 35, who is accused assaulting another member of the bar staff causing actual bodily harm.

Thorpe, of Lennox Gate, Blackpool, and Holmes, of Dalewood Avenue, also Blackpool pleaded not guilty and asked for their cases to be dealt with by magistrates .

Former Blackpool striker Lee Thorpe is charged with assaulting two club doormen at Blackpool’s Trilogy bar.

Former Blackpool striker Lee Thorpe is charged with assaulting two club doormen at Blackpool’s Trilogy bar.

Thorpe played for nine Football League clubs in his career which ended at Fleetwood Town and AFC Fylde .

His last post in the game was as a lead coach at Blackpool’s Youth Development section.

Peter Bardsley, prosecuting, said that The Crown would show CCTV of the incident . The duo were both bailed until their trial which was fixed for May 9.

 

 

‘Aggressive’ beggar banned from Blackpool town centre after harassing shoppers

Home | Blackpool Gazette

An ‘aggressive’ beggar has been banned from Blackpool town centre.

 

Reginald Brown, 46, of no fixed abode, has been hit with a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) for “persistent and aggressive harassment of members of the public”.

The order, handed down by Blackpool Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (January 12), bans Brown from entering the town centre and also bans him from begging anywhere in the resort.

The court said the CBO has been used as a ‘last resort’ after Brown continued to harass shoppers, even after repeated warnings from police and council officers.

Reginald Brown, 46, of no fixed abode, has been hit with a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) for "persistent and aggressive harassment of members of the public". The order, handed down by Blackpool Magistrates' Court on Wednesday (January 12), bans Brown from entering the town centre and also bans him from begging anywhere in the resort.

Reginald Brown, 46, of no fixed abode, has been hit with a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) for “persistent and aggressive harassment of members of the public”. The order, handed down by Blackpool Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (January 12), bans Brown from entering the town centre and also bans him from begging anywhere in the resort.

Police decided to take further action after he continued to breach the conditions of a Community Protection Notice previously handed to him for his behaviour.

A police spokesman said: “In recent months, Reginald Brown, of no fixed abode, has been causing distress to many people and businesses in Blackpool Town Centre with his persistent and aggressive harassment of members of the public, alongside repeated disorderly behaviour.

“As a result, Blackpool Neighbourhood Policing Team has worked alongside our colleagues at Blackpool Council to build the evidence to apply to the courts for a Criminal Behaviour Order.

“On, Wednesday, January 12, Blackpool Magistrates’ Court have issued Mr. Brown with a CBO after failing to comply with a Community Protection Notice.

“This order prohibits Mr. Brown from entering Blackpool Town Centre, and bans him from begging anywhere in Blackpool.

“These CBOs are used as a last resort whereby all engaging with the individual has broken down and they have refused help or guidance towards other services.

“The information provided to us by members of the public and local businesses was fundamental in building this case.”

 

 

Blackpool mum admits killing disabled daughter by starving her to death

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Blackpool woman has admitted killing her disabled daughter by slowly starving her to death.

Elaine Clarke, 49, of Garden Terrace, pleaded guilty to the unlawful killing of her daughter Debbie Leitch at Preston Crown Court today.

The body of Miss Leitch, who had Down’s Syndrome, was found at the family home in South Shore on August 29, 2019.

A post-mortem found she died from severe emaciation and neglect with an extensive scabies skin infection.

Elaine Clarke

Elaine Clarke

Six people were arrested in connection to 24-year-old’s death. Clarke was charged with gross negligent manslaughter, while her former partner Robert Bruce, 45, from Rothwell in Leeds, was charged with allowing or causing the death of a vulnerable adult.

The charge against him was later dropped, however.

Clarke previously pleaded not guilty to killing her vulnerable daughter, but changed her plea just 10 days before the case was due to go to trial.

Deborah Leitch

Deborah Leitch

Judge Amanda Justice Yip said to her: “You are well aware of the inevitable outcome that you will be going to prison, and I think the time has come that I am going to remand you to prison to make sure you are here on time on the next occasion.”

She added: “As far as (Mr Bruce) is concerned, a not guilty verdict has been entered and (he) will be released.”

 

This is what happened at the misconduct hearing after Lancashire police officer accused of leaking information

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Lancashire officer accused of leaking sensitive information from police databases was brought before a misconduct hearing.

 

Connor McHugh was accused of gaining access to police computer systems and disclosing some of the information to ‘third parties’.

Lancashire Police said such alleged actions would amount to gross misconduct and a breach of the Standards of Professional Behaviour of Confidentiality and Discreditable Conduct.

Due to the seriousness of the allegations against him, the force has arranged for a misconduct hearing to take place.

Connor McHugh was accused was accused of leaking sensitive information from police databases (Pic credit: Shutterstock)

Connor McHugh was accused was accused of leaking sensitive information from police databases (Pic credit: Shutterstock)

Overseen by Chief Constable Chris Rowley, McHugh was dismissed from his role during the hearing at Leyland Police Station in Lancastergate on Monday, January 17.

Mr Chris Rowley said: “The actions of this officer had the potential to undermine trust and confidence in the constabulary, and the police in general.

“The public quite rightly expect us to maintain the highest standards of professional behaviour and we are committed to ensuring this.

McHugh was dismissed from his role during a misconduct hearing at Leyland Police Station in Lancastergate (Credit: Google)

McHugh was dismissed from his role during a misconduct hearing at Leyland Police Station in Lancastergate (Credit: Google)

“We will take action whenever the behaviour of our staff falls below the high standards expected and which are adhered to by the vast majority of our officers and staff.”

It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you.

 

 

Fleetwood teen accused of murdering ex’s dad was ‘found in hysterics after break-up’

LancsLive - Latest news, sport, business and more from Lancashire

Levi Westhead, 18, was seen ‘crying like a child’ when the relationship ended in July

 

Mark Webster
Mark Webster

A jury has heard how a teenager accused of murdering his ex-girlfriend’s father reacted ‘very badly’ when he was told the relationship was over.

Levi Westhead, 18, denies murdering Mark Webster, 50, who died after suffering multiple stab wounds at his home in Carsluith Avenue, Blackpool, on July 23 last year.

Westhead had been in an 18 month relationship with Mr Webster’s 15-year-old daughter but it had been on and off for some time, the court heard. He is accused of inflicting the fatal stab wounds upon Mr Webster after calling at the family home unannounced and demanding to see the girl.

Witnesses in the trial at Preston Crown Court described Westhead as ‘crying’, ‘distressed’ and ‘not himself’ in the weeks before Mr Webster died.

On July 7, PC Adam Bond spoke to Westhead on the telephone following an allegation he had assaulted his ex-girlfriend on the beach at Blackpool. The officer told him he must cut contact with the girl – or risk being arrested for harassment.

PC Bond told the court: “He was emotional – I could hear his voice breaking and he seemed upset. He said he was struggling as he had no-one to talk to.”

Westhead told the officer he lived with his nan in Fleetwood and did not feel able to speak to her about his troubles. He had lost contact with his friends over the course of his relationship, he said. The officer ended the call by telling Westhead he had his mobile number and could call him back if he was still struggling but did not hear from him again, he said.

On July 15, Shaun Morris, his manager at Coral Island Arcade, said he found the defendant “crying hysterically” to two colleagues.

Mr Morris said he thought something serious had happened, such as a death, but soon learned Westhead was upset as he had broken up with his girlfriend.

He said: “I was in disbelief at his reaction. It was disproportionate.”

Mr Morris said he gave Westhead a pep talk and explained this was something which happens to everybody. However he had to send the youngster for a cup of tea before he was able to go out into the arcade to do his job.

John Ballantyne, a team leader at the arcade, also witnessed Westhead’s distress on July 15.

He said: “Shaun and myself agreed we should sit him down and talk to him about how we could help him. Shaun told him he was only young and everything would be okay in the long term. He reminded him that his work was also important and he should concentrate on that. I remember Levi worked his socks off that shift and there were no more incidents of concern.”

On July 23, Ricky Moore said he saw Westhead at a family barbecue at the home of Katie Westhead, the defendant’s aunt. Mr Moore said he had known Levi for a couple of years and he was always polite and well-mannered.

But during the barbecue, Mr Moore said Westhead sat alone in the living room while the others sat outside, saying: “He seemed sad. He wasn’t engaging well, no matter how we tried and Katie tried, he didn’t join in.”

Mr Moore said he offered Westhead a beer to try and help him relax but the teenager declined the offer.

“He came outside to have something to eat. It was a really hot day. I said ‘come on, sit down, take your jacket off, tell me your issues’,” Mr Moore said. “He just wasn’t himself.”

Mr Moore said Westhead went back inside the house and did not return to the gathering. It was only when Mr Moore went to leave that he realised Westhead was no longer there, he said.

Westhead, of Flakefleet Avenue, Fleetwood, denies murder.

(Proceeding)

 

 

Fleetwood ‘coward’ viciously attacked ex-partner and used frozen pizza as a weapon

LancsLive - Latest news, sport, business and more from Lancashire

“If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here”

 

Timothy Nylan was sentenced at Minshull Street Crown Court
Timothy Nylan was sentenced at Minshull Street Crown Court

A thug who viciously beat his ex-partner days after she dumped him and used a frozen pizza as a weapon during the terrifying ordeal has been jailed.

Timothy Nylan, from Fleetwood, walked into her bedroom at 3am as she was asleep and snatched the phone out of her hand before ‘kneeling on her legs to restrict her movement’.

He then grabbed her hair, punched her to the face and headbutted her three times before threatening to ‘put duct tape on your mouth, tie you up and kill you’ if she didn’t stay in the room and ‘stop screaming’.

He then told her: “If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here.”

Nylan, 39, was branded ‘a coward’ by a Crown Court judge as she sentenced him to just over 18 months in prison.

Minshull Street Crown Court heard how Nylan was dumped by his ex a few days before the incident, on August 27, the M.E.N reports.

“They remained in text contact until after 2.30 am on the Friday morning,” prosecutor Josh Bowker said.

“By 3am, [the victim] was asleep in bed, but was awoken by a noise on the landing and the bedroom door opening. The defendant walked into the bedroom and said “oh did I wake you?”

“He walked towards the side of the bed, before leaning over her and snatching her phone out of her hand, and kneeling on her legs to restrict her movement.”

When she tried to sit up, Nylan ‘grabbed her by the hair and punched her to the face’, Mr Bowker added.

He continued: “The defendant then struck [the woman] with the mobile phone underneath her right eye, and headbutted her three times.”

When the victim tried to escape, Nylan told her he would ‘put duct tape on your mouth, tie you up and kill you’ if she didn’t stay in the room and ‘stop screaming’.

After locking the pair in the bathroom, Nylan continued his tirade of violence by dragging his victim by the arm downstairs to the kitchen.

“He took a frozen pizza from the fridge, and put it under her eye and asked her to tell him the truth,” Mr Bowker continued. “She said that she was, and the defendant’s response was to push the pizza harder into her face, and say “I know the truth so just tell me, you’re just a s*** like the rest of them.

“As he pushed the pizza harder into her, she said “ow,” and the defendant told her to stop saying that.”

Fortunately, the woman — who had activated the emergency SOS feature on her phone at this point — was able to squeeze past Nylan.

He then gave a chilling warning to her.

“If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here,” was the message the court heard, before officers did arrive and arrest him.

Nylan, of Kingfisher Way, Fleetwood, appeared before Recorder Tania Griffiths QC at Minshull Street Crown Court last week (January 12).

He was represented by Kay Driver, who said in mitigation her client had suffered ‘life changing injuries’ after a car crash, leaving him anxiety and depression.

She also said that his drinking had increased as a result of those mental health troubles, but accepted it was not an excuse for her client’s behaviour.

Nylan also had a history of violent offending, she accepted.

Sentencing Nylan to 573 days — or just over 18 months in prison — Miss Griffiths QC branded him a ‘coward’.

She said: “This was a prolonged assault of significant planning and pre-meditation, given that you knew what you were going to do and she was vulnerable.

“Fortunately the physical injuries were not serious but her victim personal statement showed that this went on far beyond the physical.

“Your impact on women is very, very significant and you seem completely unable to control yourself. You are a coward, Mr Nylan.

“The court has got your number. The next time you are back, the sentence will get longer and longer.

“Curb your temper in your own interest, and everyone else’s.”

Nylan admitted causing actual bodily harm and making threats to kill.

He is subject to a restraining order, and must pay a victim surcharge.

 

 

Father and daughter handed licence ban after video shows pets being hit at Lancashire dog day care centre

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A father and daughter who were involved in the running of a Lancashire doggy day care centre have been sentenced after videos emerged on social media showing dogs being hit and smacked.

 

Lauren Walker, 31, and her father, 69-year-old John Walker, pleaded guilty to animal welfare offences following an investigation by the RSPCA into Mucky Pups Doggy Day Care.

Both have now been banned from holding a council animal welfare licence so are unable to run a similar business. John Walker was given a 10-year ban on holding such a licence and Lauren Walker a five-year ban.

Hyndburn Borough Council previously revoked Mucky Pup’s licence in February 2020, while the RSPCA carried out a full investigation into the abuse allegations.

A still from a video shown to court which appeared to show John Walker, from RIshton, striking dogs at the Mucky Pups Doggy Day Care centre in the town, near Burnley. John Walker and his daughter Lauren have been sentenced after pleading guilty to animal welfare offences.

A still from a video shown to court which appeared to show John Walker, from RIshton, striking dogs at the Mucky Pups Doggy Day Care centre in the town, near Burnley. John Walker and his daughter Lauren have been sentenced after pleading guilty to animal welfare offences.

Burnley Magistrates Court previously heard how the day care business for pets, on Harwood Road in RIshton, near Burnley, was run by Lauren and she employed her father to work at the centre.

But a complaint was made to the animal welfare charity on December 24, 2019 by a former employee who had taken video footage of dogs at the centre being hit and smacked by John Walker. The videos emerged on social media and were subsequently shared.

John Walker, of Greenhill, Great Harwood, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to protected animals, namely seven dogs, by the inappropriate use of physical force, between September 10, 2019 and November 19, 2019 and failing to take reasonable steps to ensure the needs of the animals were met between August 1, 2019 and December 18, 2019.

Lauren Walker, of Knowles Street, Rishton, pleaded guilty to failing to take reasonable steps to prevent unnecessary suffering by her father John Walker to protected animals.

RSPCA Inspector Adam Dickinson, who led the investigation, told the court how following the videos appearing on social media and reports in the local press the owners of the dogs shown on camera came forward to provide witness statements.

“In the first video, for example, the adult male individual restrains a black Labrador type dog by holding the dog’s collar with his left hand while he strikes the dog three times with his right hand. The dog vocalises and the male throws the dog away using the collar. The body language of the dog is fearful submission with no aggression.

“In my opinion the actions of the adult male individual have been sufficiently influential on the welfare of some of these animals to the extent that has caused them to experience suffering.”

As well as the ban on holding a licence at a sentencing hearing held at Blackpool Magistrates Court yesterday, John Walker was given a 12-month community order, including 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement and a 26-week curfew from 7pm to 7am. He was also ordered to pay £200 costs and a £90 victim surcharge.

Lauren Walker was also given a 12-month community order, including a 15-day rehabilitation activity requirement and must serve a five-week curfew between the hours of 7pm and 7am. She was also ordered to pay £200 costs and a £90 victim surcharge.

Following the sentencing, Inspector Dickinson said the case highlighted how important reward based training is for dogs.

He said: “The RSPCA only promotes positive, reward-based training methods and does not condone this sort of behaviour in order to train dogs or to tell them off.

Training dogs is important to help them learn to behave appropriately and to make it easier to keep them under control.

“Reward based training which includes the use of things that dogs like or want for example. Toys, food and praise is enjoyable for the dog and is widely regarded as the preferred form of training dogs.

Training which includes physical punishment may cause pain, suffering and distress. These techniques can compromise dog welfare, lead to aggressive responses and worsen the problems they aim to address.”

 

 

Fleetwood man arrested after suspected arson attack in Thornton bailed

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A Fleetwood man who was arrested following a suspected arson attack in Thornton has been released on bail.

 

A 37-year-old man from Fleetwood was arrested on suspicion of assault (GBH), criminal damage and arson endangering life on Tuesday morning (January 18).

He was taken into custody after police raided homes in Poulton Road and Chatsworth Avenue in Fleetwood, as well as Allen Close in Cleveleys.

Officers today (January 20) confirmed the man was “bailed to February 14”.

A Fleetwood man who was arrested following a suspected arson attack in Thornton has been released on bail

A Fleetwood man who was arrested following a suspected arson attack in Thornton has been released on bail

Police said the raids were in response to a number of incidents in the area, including a suspected arson attack at a home in Mill Close, Thornton, in November 2021.

No one was injured in the incident.

 

 

Fleetwood ‘coward’ viciously attacked ex-partner and used frozen pizza as a weapon

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“If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here”

 

Timothy Nylan was sentenced at Minshull Street Crown Court
Timothy Nylan was sentenced at Minshull Street Crown Court

A thug who viciously beat his ex-partner days after she dumped him and used a frozen pizza as a weapon during the terrifying ordeal has been jailed.

Timothy Nylan, from Fleetwood, walked into her bedroom at 3am as she was asleep and snatched the phone out of her hand before ‘kneeling on her legs to restrict her movement’.

He then grabbed her hair, punched her to the face and headbutted her three times before threatening to ‘put duct tape on your mouth, tie you up and kill you’ if she didn’t stay in the room and ‘stop screaming’.

He then told her: “If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here.”

Nylan, 39, was branded ‘a coward’ by a Crown Court judge as she sentenced him to just over 18 months in prison.

Minshull Street Crown Court heard how Nylan was dumped by his ex a few days before the incident, on August 27, the M.E.N reports.

“They remained in text contact until after 2.30 am on the Friday morning,” prosecutor Josh Bowker said.

“By 3am, [the victim] was asleep in bed, but was awoken by a noise on the landing and the bedroom door opening. The defendant walked into the bedroom and said “oh did I wake you?”

“He walked towards the side of the bed, before leaning over her and snatching her phone out of her hand, and kneeling on her legs to restrict her movement.”

When she tried to sit up, Nylan ‘grabbed her by the hair and punched her to the face’, Mr Bowker added.

He continued: “The defendant then struck [the woman] with the mobile phone underneath her right eye, and headbutted her three times.”

When the victim tried to escape, Nylan told her he would ‘put duct tape on your mouth, tie you up and kill you’ if she didn’t stay in the room and ‘stop screaming’.

After locking the pair in the bathroom, Nylan continued his tirade of violence by dragging his victim by the arm downstairs to the kitchen.

“He took a frozen pizza from the fridge, and put it under her eye and asked her to tell him the truth,” Mr Bowker continued. “She said that she was, and the defendant’s response was to push the pizza harder into her face, and say “I know the truth so just tell me, you’re just a s*** like the rest of them.

“As he pushed the pizza harder into her, she said “ow,” and the defendant told her to stop saying that.”

Fortunately, the woman — who had activated the emergency SOS feature on her phone at this point — was able to squeeze past Nylan.

He then gave a chilling warning to her.

“If the 5-0 knock on, as soon as I hear that door I’m going to kill you, I will tie you up and slit your throat from here to here,” was the message the court heard, before officers did arrive and arrest him.

Nylan, of Kingfisher Way, Fleetwood, appeared before Recorder Tania Griffiths QC at Minshull Street Crown Court last week (January 12).

He was represented by Kay Driver, who said in mitigation her client had suffered ‘life changing injuries’ after a car crash, leaving him anxiety and depression.

She also said that his drinking had increased as a result of those mental health troubles, but accepted it was not an excuse for her client’s behaviour.

Nylan also had a history of violent offending, she accepted.

Sentencing Nylan to 573 days — or just over 18 months in prison — Miss Griffiths QC branded him a ‘coward’.

She said: “This was a prolonged assault of significant planning and pre-meditation, given that you knew what you were going to do and she was vulnerable.

“Fortunately the physical injuries were not serious but her victim personal statement showed that this went on far beyond the physical.

“Your impact on women is very, very significant and you seem completely unable to control yourself. You are a coward, Mr Nylan.

“The court has got your number. The next time you are back, the sentence will get longer and longer.

“Curb your temper in your own interest, and everyone else’s.”

Nylan admitted causing actual bodily harm and making threats to kill.

He is subject to a restraining order, and must pay a victim surcharge.

 

 

New counter terrorism measures adopted to protect Blackpool

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Tougher security measures to combat the threat of terrorism are set to be adopted in Blackpool to protect the resort’s busiest areas.

The added controls will give the police stronger powers over the road and pedestrian network in the event of a serious incident.

A council report says while there is no specific threat to Blackpool, chiefs have agreed to the introduction of an anti-terrorism traffic regulation order (ATTRO) to enable the new powers.

The resort, which attracts millions of visitors a year, is acting in response to attacks elsewhere where terrorists have targeted crowded places.

The powers will be controlled by the police and council

The powers will be controlled by the police and council

Stronger systems are also deemed necessary to protect the new conference centre due to open this spring at the Winter Gardens, and which is expected to attract high profile dignitaries.

A council report says the order will enable the police to “work with partners to future proof the safety of the iconic venues in Blackpool against the risk of a terrorist attack.”

It adds: “The development of the Winter Gardens Conference Centre is attracting reservations from Parliamentary parties which is presenting opportunities to the town and conversely increasing the risk of policing such events.”

The AATRO zone will ring the town via Squires Gate Lane, Progress Way, the M55 Link, Preston New Road, South Park Drive, East Park Drive, St Walburgas, Plymouth Road, Warbreck Hill Road, Gynn Square. the Promenade and Starr Gate.

Its use would include to keep access clear on main routes for emergency vehicles in the instance of an emergency incident, and also to assist with evacuation procedures.

But it would also allow measures such as the installation of rising security bollards around the town centre, the removal of parked cars and restriction of pedestrian and vehicle movements.

The powers within the order would only be used on a temporary basis in response to specific incidents or security intelligence.

The report says: “The overarching rationale for this is public safety and the need to protect the public from acts of terrorism.

“In recent years there have been a number of significant terrorist atrocities in the UK and mainland Europe.

“In order to mitigate this threat Blackpool Borough Council have worked closely with Lancashire Police, to put in place protective security arrangements to enhance public safety.

“The introduction of an ATTRO will complement and support the continuing work being undertaken by both Blackpool Borough Council and the police.

“The ATTRO would only be brought into use as an operational measure in two

circumstances, for pre-planned events as part of an overall security plan and also as a reaction to an incident where there is an immediate need to protect the public.”

Having an ATTRO in place allows the police to restrict traffic and pedestrian access to an area by using measures such as road and footpath closures and the clearing of parked vehicles from streets in and around the venue or incident location.

It would also assist evacuation of casualties and keep key routes clear of traffic.

It can only be brought into use under the direction of Lancashire police, by an

officer of at least the rank of inspector in consultation with the duty strategic commander.

The use of the ATTRO for a pre-planned event must be agreed between the police and the council.

Restrictions must remain in place for no longer than is necessary and would be reviewed by the council and the police jointly at least every 48 hours.

 

Parents of baby Ava Grace Nolan planned to marry knowing one of them allegedly killed their daughter

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Sophie Nash and Daniel Nolan also celebrated his 30th birthday in Blackpool on the anniversary of Ava’s death

 

Daniel Nolan and Sophie Nash
Daniel Nolan and Sophie Nash (Image: Facebook)

The parents of Ava Grace Nolan, who was allegedly shaken to death at only eight days old, continued their relationship and even planned to marry – knowing one of them caused the injuries to their daughter, a court heard.

Sophie Nash, 31, and Daniel Nolan , 30, even celebrated Nolan’s birthday with a night out in Blackpool on the anniversary of their baby’s death.

Neither admits causing the catastrophic head injuries which killed their tiny baby on August 16 2017.

Each blames the other for causing or allowing the death of Ava.

Police launched a murder investigation after Ava collapsed at the couple’s home in Dover Street, Nelson.

Nash and Nolan were arrested and released on bail with conditions they must not contact each other.

However in April 2018 the bail conditions were removed and the couple rekindled their relationship.

On August 16 2020, they spent the anniversary of Ava’s death in Blackpool, belatedly celebrating Nolan’s milestone birthday.

In October 2021 Nash posted on Facebook: “It is with a heavy heart we are having to postpone our wedding.”

She said “financial and difficult personal reasons” meant they would be unable to tie the knot as planned.

Mr Justice Spencer told the jury: “You may want to ask yourselves why they have stuck by each other when they know if they aren’t responsible themselves for Ava’s death then it must have been the other.”

The couple eventually called time on their relationship in December 2021, as the trial got underway at Preston Crown Court.

When asked why he had not left Nash, who he said was violent towards him, Nolan said he was “besotted” with her.

He said he was bullied at school, abused as a child, and hates being on his own.

“I didn’t think I would be with anyone else”, he said. “I didn’t think I was good enough for anyone.”

Mr Justice Spencer reminded the jury of the evidence in the case and said the couple’s older child, who can not been named for legal reasons, was removed from their care following Ava’s death.

He said Nash said she faced a choice between allowing the child to be looked after by her mother long term or being adopted. She chose adoption.

(Proceeding)

 

 

Three people arrested over weekend after police crackdown on burglaries and vehicle crime in Blackpool

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Three people were arrested over the weekend as part of a police operation to target burglaries and vehicle crime in Blackpool.

The operation saw increased police activity in and around the Bloomfield, Tyldesley and Claremont wards.

Over 32 people were stopped and searched during the crackdown – which ran on Friday and Saturday evening (January 7 and 8).

Plain-clothed and uniformed officers ultimately arrested three people during the operation.

Officers were also able to help an elderly man get the medical attention he required after he suffered a medical episode while police were patrolling the area.

Insp John Jennings-Wharton, of Blackpool Police said: “Not only do these operations help us to prevent and detect crime, officers have also gathered intelligence which will be followed up, allowing further action to be taken.

“We will continue running these proactive operations regularly across the town in response to crime trends and feedback from local residents.”

Paris Lee, 32, of Rosefinch Court, Blackpool was arrested and later charged with drink driving.

A 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and theft of a motor vehicle after a moped was stopped in Blackpool (Credit: Lancashire Police)

A 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and theft of a motor vehicle after a moped was stopped in Blackpool (Credit: Lancashire Police)

She is due to appear at Blackpool Magistrates Court on February 15.

Kathryn Ashworth,34, of Coronation Street, Blackpool, who was wanted on warrant, was also arrested and remanded to appear in court on January 10.

A 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and theft of a motor vehicle after a moped was stopped.

The operation involved both plain-clothed officers and uniformed officers from the task force team, neighbourhood teams and response teams (Credit: Lancashire Police)

The operation involved both plain-clothed officers and uniformed officers from the task force team, neighbourhood teams and response teams (Credit: Lancashire Police)

He was later released under investigation pending further enquiries.

A man was also reported for summons for driving without insurance.

“I would urge local residents to work with us. Please tell us what your concerns are where you live so we can tailor our operations to address them,” Insp John Jennings-Wharton added.

“We will have police community support officers out in the areas in the coming days so please speak to them if you see them.

“You can also complete our Lancashire Talking survey online.”

 

 

CCTV to tackle anti-social behaviour at St Annes ‘hotspots’

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Mobile CCTV is to be deployed by Fylde Council in St Annes in response to recent incidents of anti-social behaviour.

 

An application has been approved to utilise the Council’s new redeployable wireless CCTV assets to monitor the section of Promenade which includes the St Annes Beach huts, following a recent act of vandalism which resulted in damage to one of the huts.

Another application proposes the deployment of CCTV at the town’s Hope Street Park to address concerns of residents after damage to park facilities.

Council leader Coun Karen Buckley said: “We have suffered a spate of anti-social behaviour over the last few weeks, including vandalism and criminal damage.

The situation in the reported problem areas will be monitored by CCTV

The situation in the reported problem areas will be monitored by CCTV

“The council is keen to assist by deploying their mobile CCTV cameras and have identified the area by the Beach Huts and Hope Street Park as current hotspots.

“These wireless CCTV cameras have been used at locations across the Fylde and are a good deterrent against anti-social behaviour. They can only be deployed where there is evidence of need and so I’m grateful to the police and the public for reporting the incidents.

“As well as the mobile CCTV, we are budgeting for an overhaul of the permanent CCTV in all three town centres in the next financial year. The upgrade will mean higher-definition cameras including the ability to record colour at night-time. We want to support the public with crime prevention measures and the police with detection.”

It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you. For unlimited access to our unrivalled local reporting, you can take out a subscription here and help support the work of our dedicated team of reporters.

 

Murdered Blackpool lecturer killed with crossbow was conned out of £220,000 before his death

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A former Blackpool college lecturer who was murdered with a crossbow was conned out of more than £200,000 in the years leading up to his death, a court has heard.

 

Gerald Corrigan, a retired photography lecturer at Blackpool and the Fylde College, was fatally shot with a crossbow as he adjusted a satellite dish outside his home near South Stack Road in a remote part of Holyhead, Anglesey, at around 12.35am on April 19, 2019.

In February 2020, Terence Whall, 39, was convicted of the pensioner’s murder.

Nearly three years after his death, it has been revealed that Mr Corrigan and his partner, Marie Bailey, 67, had been conned out of more than £200,000 in the years leading up to his murder.

Gerald Corrigan, a retired photography lecturer at Blackpool and the Fylde College, was fatally shot with a crossbow as he adjusted a satellite dish outside his home near South Stack Road in a remote part of Holyhead, Anglesey, at around 12.35am on April 19, 2019

Gerald Corrigan, a retired photography lecturer at Blackpool and the Fylde College, was fatally shot with a crossbow as he adjusted a satellite dish outside his home near South Stack Road in a remote part of Holyhead, Anglesey, at around 12.35am on April 19, 2019

At Mold Crown Court on Monday (January 10), it was heard that the couple befriended Richard Wyn Lewis in 2015 and in the following four years paid out thousands of pounds which they believed was for property developments, land sales and horses.

Peter Rouch QC, prosecuting, said the reasons for Mr Corrigan’s murder, outside his home near South Stack in Anglesey, North Wales, in April 2019, had nothing to do with the trial.

He said the alleged fraud offences only came to light when Miss Bailey was interviewed by police after his death.

He said: “Wyn Lewis is a conman, he is a fraudster, and, during the period spanned by this indictment, he conned a number of different people out of serious amounts of money, sometimes hundreds of pounds and sometimes thousands, many thousands.

“Throughout this time people lost their money and Wyn Lewis dishonestly kept it.”

He said Mr Corrigan and Miss Bailey met Lewis, 50, in 2015 and came to regard him as a “good and trusted friend”.

Lewis suggested to Mr Corrigan that he could make money by selling his home, Gof Du, for development and put him in contact with a potential buyer, John Halsall, and a man known as David who he said used to work in the planning department, the court heard.

Mr Corrigan spoke to the men over the phone, but police later found the numbers he used for them were registered to Lewis.

He handed over cash to Lewis for planning applications, the purchase of nearby land and to set up an offshore bank account, the court was told.

But Mr Rouch said no planning applications were made and no land was bought.

He said: “The whole thing was a sham, a complete con, which cost Gerry Corrigan and Marie Bailey many thousands of pounds.”

The couple also paid thousands of pounds to Lewis for horses which he claimed to have bought for them, the court heard.

The court was told that Miss Bailey, who has multiple sclerosis, transferred £50,000 to the account of Lewis’s partner, Siwan Maclean, which she believed was to buy a former school in Llanddona, Anglesey, that she could sell on to a developer.

But, Mr Rouch said, the building had already been bought by the local village hall committee four months before she transferred the money.

He said Lewis was paid by Miss Bailey to take away her car after telling her it needed to be scrapped, but went on to sell it for £5,300.

Miss Bailey estimated they had given at least £200,000 to Lewis, the jury heard.

Mr Rouch said: “She said by the end she and Mr Corrigan were virtually cleaned out of all available cash.

“About two days before Mr Corrigan was shot with a crossbow, Mr Corrigan gave Wyn Lewis £200 in cash which was all he could afford.

“He apparently told Wyn Lewis at the time ‘there is no more money’.”

Analysis of the couple’s bank accounts showed extra withdrawals of £170,000 from the time they met Lewis, which added to the £50,000 bank transfer by Miss Bailey would make a total of £220,000, Mr Rouch said.

Lewis, of Llanfair-yn-Neubwll, Holyhead, denies 11 counts of fraud and one count of intending to pervert the course of justice.

His partner, Maclean, 52, denies entering into a money laundering arrangement.