Ex-prisoner Peter Watton sought in Chester rape case


A man who was released from prison last week is wanted for questioning by police investigating the rape of a woman who was attacked while out jogging.

Detectives in Chester are appealing to the public for assistance in tracing the whereabouts of 37-year-old Peter Watton.

Police wish to speak to him in connection with the attack which happened on Friday afternoon when a 44-year-old woman was assaulted on common ground in The Dukes Drive area of Handbridge, Chester.

The victim had been jogging with her pet dog when she was attacked, police said.

Watton is local to the Chester area and was released from prison on Wednesday. It is understood that he being was detained at HMP Risley in Cheshire..

Police said he is considered "a risk to the public" and is in breach of his licence conditions and is wanted on a recall to prison.

Watton was jailed for six years in 2010 for robbery and kidnap.

It is understood that he had served half that time and was released on licence for the remainder of his sentence.

Detective Superintendent Andy Southcott from Cheshire Police said: "We have a number of active lines of inquiry that we are progressing and believe that Peter Watton may be able to assist us in our investigation.

"I would urge anyone who has any information about Watton's whereabouts or who sees him not to approach him but to contact Cheshire Police immediately on 999.

"My concern is not only for the public at large but also for Peter himself, and I would also appeal directly to Peter Watton to make contact with the Police or present himself at the nearest Police Station."

Detective Inspector Simon Lonsdale added: "This is a very serious but isolated incident. I would like to reassure the public that we have a number of lines of inquiry that we are following and extra police and support officers will be patrolling the area.

"People using the area around Eaton Road and the river Dee should remain vigilant and take basic precautions such as not going to isolated areas alone and reporting anything untoward to police".

Police said the victim was being supported by specially trained officers.

Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Watton should call Cheshire Police on 999 quoting incident number 6 of June 15, or alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.