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14-year-old grabbed by masked man

PUBLISHED: 20:44 05 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:29 03 March 2010

SHOCKED residents today vowed to tighten up on personal safety today after a 14-year-old girl was grabbed by a masked man in Ipswich.

The teenager was walking along Rands Way towards Landseer Road when she was approached from behind by a man who grabbed hold of her arm.

SHOCKED residents today vowed to tighten up on personal safety today after a 14-year-old girl was grabbed by a masked man in Ipswich.

The teenager was walking along Rands Way towards Landseer Road when she was approached from behind by a man who grabbed hold of her arm. The girl struggled and the man, who was wearing a dark balaclava, ran off.

Shop assistant Alicia Patterson, 19, said that she usually walked along Rands Way on her way home from work, but would be changing her route in future.

"It's not good, I'll be careful from now," said the teenager of Landseer Road.

Giving her reaction to the attack, which occurred shortly before 8pm on Saturday >, Thelma Legge, 51, of Rands Way said that she was concerned because she often walked home alone late at night.

"I always look behind me anyway," she said.

Ted Howgego, 51, owner of Rendezvous coffee shop voiced his concern.

"It's awful. You read about it nearly everyday in the papers but to get it in your own back yard is not very nice."

Other residents spoke of a climate of fear, which had been mounting even before Saturday's incident. Youths congregated around the Co-op store at the top of the road late at night and caused trouble, they said.

"It's very bad around here. The police are up here nearly every night. You get kids hanging around at all hours of the night and if you say something the next thing you know is you have a brick through your window," said one resident who was too frightened to be identified.

Another resident who also wished to remain anonymous said: "It's time we got the kids sorted out around here. They come out with abusive language at the shops."

The man involved in Saturday's incident is described as around 5ft 5ins tall and of stocky build. He wore grey trainers and a dark balaclava.

Anyone who was in the area at the time and may have witnessed the incident or recognises the offender from the description is asked to contact PC Robert Le-Mare at Ipswich Police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.


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