AFTER the recent reports of rape and sexual assault a West Mercia chief inspector said a team of dedicated detectives are working to bring people to justice.

West Mercia Police said two rapes and a sexual assault had been reported to officers, as well as one flashing incident.

But they have arrested two people on suspicion of rape and flashing.

Chief Inspector Ross Jones said the four reports in a short space of time is rare for Herefordshire.

A team of dedicated detectives are now working on those investigations to ultimately bring the perpetrators to justice.

Hereford Times: Chief Inspector Ross Jones, of West Mercia Police near the scene of one of the reported rapes. Picture: Rob DaviesChief Inspector Ross Jones, of West Mercia Police near the scene of one of the reported rapes. Picture: Rob Davies


“We are very aware of the concern in the community,” he said.

The police have increased high visibility patrols in particular areas along the river paths with undercover police officers in plain clothing also in the areas – this is to look out for any suspicious activity spotted by them and reported by the public.

“It means we are there and able to respond more quickly,” he added.

Currently the police have a team investigating whether the cases are linked but the evidence they have so far gives them cause to believe they aren’t all necessarily linked.

“It is important we keep an open mind and pursue all lines of enquiry,” he said.


All four reports have happened a week after each other.

“It is difficult to speculate on the reasons why, the focus for us is identifying the offenders and arresting them and securing the evidence to charge and convict them,” he said.

“It clearly has crossed all our minds.

“We are grateful for the victims who have come forward and we would encourage others to come forward and seek our help too.”

Herefordshire has had a 20 per cent reduction of recorded rape offences in the last six months.

“Overall Herefordshire is a safe place to be, and we will continue working to keep it as safe as it possibly can be.”


The safer streets funding will lead to 40 new CCTV cameras and lighting throughout different areas in the city.

CCTV can be very successful in catching perpetrators and is a fantastic opportunity for Hereford, he said.

“I give the reassurance of how hard my officers are working to identify those offenders and arrest them to bring them to justice.

“We are so good at looking out for each other here in Herefordshire.

“We have had fantastic response from the public following the appeals and reporting suspicious activity for us to follow up on, so we thank Herefordshire and Hereford for supporting us.”

If you have been impacted by reading this article and need support, please contact West Mercia Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre (WMRSASC) who offer a range of specialist support services to anyone who has been impacted by any form of sexual violence at any time in their lives.

You call its helpline on 01905 724514 or visit its website for more information about how they can support you.

In addition to supporting survivors of sexual violence, WMRSASC also invest time and resources on preventative work – such as education in schools and in the wider community that focuses on consent, healthy sexual relationships, having the skills to safely intervene when inappropriate behaviours are witnessed and knowing where to get help and support are also critical in eliminating sexual violence.

Responsibility for sexual violence sits with the perpetrator not the victim and we should all be able to feel safe, wherever we are, said a spokesperson from the centre.