I was snatched from behind by a stranger as I walked to an appointment in broad daylight – I fought him off in terror

I was snatched from behind by a stranger as I walked to an appointment in broad daylight – I fought him off in terror


A WOMAN has told how she fought off a stranger who grabbed her from behind in a terrifying broad-daylight attack.

CCTV footage captures the woman's screams as a man grabbed her waist and tried to "drag her up a path" in Middleton, Greater Manchester, on Tuesday morning.

The attack itself was not captured on camera, although footage from a resident's CCTV camera showed the moments before and after the horror.

It captured the woman, whose identity is being kept anonymous, walking along the road before a man – who the victim described as the suspect who grabbed her – walking closely behind her. 

Towards the end of the clip, horrifying screams can be heard in the background.

The footage then appears to show the same man running back towards where he came from. 

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A 21-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of kidnap and sexual assault in relation to the incident.

The woman said she has been left "shaken" and "not feeling herself" since the attack, which happened on Great Arbor Way.

Recalling the attack, she said she was making her way down the street at around 9:20am as she headed to an appointment. 

She said the road is "quite secluded" but that "nothing crossed her mind" something would happen at that time of day.

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She was listening to a podcast through her earphones when she then heard footsteps coming up from behind her. A man then grabbed her by the waist.

The woman said: "He put his arms around my waist and I turned around then went into panic mode.

"I just started screaming 'no' and dropped down. I was struggling as much as I could and was trying to push his hands off me.

"He was trying to pull me and drag me back up the path. He ended up just letting go, it seemed like forever but it was probably only 10 or 20 seconds."

The suspect was described as a tall black man with an afro hair cut.

The woman said she had her bag on her shoulder, but that the suspect did not try to take it.

She added: "I think it's going round in my head what could have happened.

"If it was a young girl or child or this happened to someone else they might not scream and just go into sheer shock. He could have even picked them up."

When the man ran from the scene, she said she rushed to the nearest house and asked her help.

She was then taken to safety by neighbours as she called the police.

The woman said police officers arrived on the scene and searched the area.

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A spokesperson for Greater Manchester Police confirmed to the M.E.N that the incident is being investigated.

A GMP spokesman said: "Officers in Rochdale are questioning a 21-year-old man after reports of kidnap and sexual assault of a woman in the Middleton area on May 17 2022 after he was arrested yesterday. Police aren't looking for anybody else in connection with the incident."

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