INCREASED police patrols will continue along the river path in Hereford over the bank holiday weekend after five rapes and sexual assaults were reported.

West Mercia Police says it has made five arrests, but no one has yet been charged in relation to the sex attacks reported in the three weeks from July 31.

Four of those suspects have been released on police bail and one has been released with no further action.

Hereford Times: West Mercia Police offcers were at a vigil held for the alleged victims last weekWest Mercia Police offcers were at a vigil held for the alleged victims last week

It is not clear which attacks the arrests are in relation to, but West Mercia Police has been asked to clarify its latest statement.

Specially trained officers are supporting the victims, and a dedicated team of officers is leading investigations into the reports.


Herefordshire safer communities Chief Inspector Greg Tudge said: “We are grateful for the courage of the victims in these attacks in coming forward and sharing the information they have been able to give us so far.

“We are aware there are concerns around why no-one has been charged yet in relation to any of the incidents and I would like to offer my assurances to our local communities that we have a dedicated team of officers working diligently to obtain crucial evidence in relation to each incident.

“Information we receive from members of the public is absolutely vital in helping us secure this evidence and I would once again ask members of the public to come forward with any information you may have. 

"Perhaps something you heard or saw in the area on the days of the incidents. Please think back – you may remember something you think unimportant but which could, in fact, be valuable information."

West Mercia Police is still appealing for the dog walker to come forward in relation to the assault on August 12. 


A man was walking a small dark-coloured dog, possibly a poodle, along the footpath and it’s believed he may have seen the suspect in the moments before the incident.

Anyone with information should call police on 101.

Hereford Times: Officers have upped patrols as a result of the sex attack reportsOfficers have upped patrols as a result of the sex attack reports

As a result of the attacks, alleged rapes on July 31 and August 7, an alleged flashing on August 3, and two attempted rapes on August 12 and August 20, police have upped patrols.

“We have increased patrols by both plain clothes and uniformed officers during the week and weekends, particularly during the late evening and overnight, these will continue over the bank holiday weekend," chief inspector Tudge said.


"Please be assured that we are taking action, not only by increasing our visible presence with additional uniformed officers, but by working with partners, including Vennture Street Pastors who play a key role in improving public safety as part of the Safer Streets Project.

"In the meantime, I would like to encourage the public to remain vigilant and report anything suspicious to the police.”

He reiterated that a £500,000 funding package to focus on tackling offences which involve violence against women and girls.

He said the funding will allow the implementation of improved lighting and CCTV, with areas covered including those around both Victoria and Hunderton Bridges, as well as Aylestone, Whitecross Road, Bishops Meadow and Canary Bridge, with plans to improve lighting and CCTV coverage.

The funding will also allow further education to be delivered to schools, as well as a targeted campaign encouraging bystanders as well as women and girls to report concerns. It will also highlight support services available.