Police defend appeal over 90-year-old Rochdale woman after tests find no forensic evidence of rape
Police issued an appeal for information on Tuesday over the alleged attack
Police investigating the alleged attack of a 90-year-old woman have defended their public appeal after fast-tracked test results revealed there is no forensic evidence she was raped.
On Wednesday, Greater Manchester Police issued an appeal for information over the alleged incident, during which the woman said she had been dragged off Spotland Road in Rochdale and attacked at about 6.45pm on Tuesday while on her way to a local shop.
Officers said the pensioner had been through a “horrific ordeal” and the community would no doubt share the police’s “revulsion” at the nature of the alleged crime.
Tests were then fast-tracked overnight by detectives working on the investigation and results showed that at this stage there is no forensic evidence to corroborate that an attack of a sexual nature took place.
Specially-trained officers are continuing to work with the pensioner and offer her support and police are investigating the full circumstances of the incident.
The force said it is continuing to appeal to anyone who may have seen the woman in order to determine exactly what occurred.
Superintendent Alistair Mallen, of Greater Manchester police, said on Thursday: "The lady in question stated she had been raped and she gave the same account when she was video interviewed.
"As people would expect we carried out forensic tests and these were fast-tracked overnight. The results now show that there is no forensic evidence of a rape taking place.
"Something has clearly happened to this lady so we would like to hear from anyone who saw anything.
"It is important to state that was a report made in good faith, by an elderly, vulnerable lady and, as such, people would always expect us to investigate thoroughly.
"When we receive a report of this nature we will always investigate to establish the full facts and, alongside this, we will do everything we can to support the victim.
"People may question why we took the decision to go public and, to that, I can say that we had a duty of care to both the complainant and to the wider public. When making these decisions we have to weigh up the need to inform the public with the need to reassure them that they are not in any danger.
"Every case is considered on its individual merits at that particular time and, in this case, it was felt the community needed to be made aware.
"The most important aspect to remember is that we will always investigate reports of sexual offences and we always encourage victims to speak to the police.”
Top 20 misconceptions people believe are true
Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
'We're not heroes, just tourists': Swedish police officers on holiday stop vicious assault on New York subway
Head transplant: man will be attached to new body in under an hour and aim is immortality, doctor says
Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Katie Hopkins on LBC: Listen to caller taking The Sun columnist to task over migrant comments
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
Rupert Murdoch berated Sun journalists for not doing enough to attack Ed Miliband and stop him winning the general election
- 1 'We're not heroes, just tourists': Swedish police officers on holiday stop vicious assault on New York subway
- 2 Black Mass trailer: Johnny Depp might have started making good films again
- 3 Head transplant: man will be attached to new body in under an hour and aim is immortality, doctor says
- 4 Jacob Lescenski and Anthony Martinez: Straight student asks gay friend to High School prom and makes a million Twitter friends
- 5 Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'