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A further arrest has been made as part of an on-going investigation following several incidents of disorder that are believed to be in response to a video being circulated online.
A video of an assault, which occurred on 21 June in an alleyway off Featherstall Road North, was reported at the time and a full, thorough investigation was launched. Three men aged 17 were arrested in connection with the incident and bailed pending further enquiries.
Another male, 17-years-old, handed himself in last night and was arrested on suspicion of assault and has been bailed for further enquires.
On Sunday, officers received a report of a group of people attacking three properties in the Westwood and Werneth areas of Oldham. Days later on Monday and Tuesday, further reports of criminal damage to a business on Eleanor Street were received, resulting in a number of windows broken.
A section 60 was put in place on Monday and Tuesday night meaning officers have increased stop and search powers in Westwood, Oldham. The order is often used in areas where either serious violence has occurred or police believe serious violence is about to occur and gives officers the power to stop and search anyone in a designated location, looking for offensive weapons or bladed articles.
The alleged assault in June is not believed to have been hate crime-related and Oldham’s district commander has stressed that the investigation is ‘very much on-going’.
Councillor Jean Stretton, cabinet member for Neighbourhoods at Oldham Council, said: “What has happened over the last few days has caused concern and worry to residents.
“At this time, it’s important everyone stays calm and safe and lets the police get on with their job of bringing the people responsible for the attack to justice.
“Thankfully, we’ve been told the young victim is making a recovery. He has appealed for calm and asked that there is no more violence or retaliation, so please listen to his words.
“This weekend it’s Eid al-Adha, which many Oldhamers will be celebrating with family and friends. I would ask everyone in the community to work together and help ensure Eid is a happy and peaceful time.”
Chief Superintendent Chris Bowen, from GMP’s Oldham district, said: “We know that the video, which shows a male being violently assaulted, has understandably left a community concerned but I would like to reassure them that our investigation is very much on-going at a rapid pace.
“The events over the last few days are continuing to worry those nearby and I would like to reassure those concerned that we are doing all we can to prevent any further disorder – such events should not divide such a strong community.
“Our aim, as always, is to bring people to justice. The investigation into the assault is continuing, with three arrests made and a further one today. Those involved and committing further disorder will also be brought to justice.
“Safety in Oldham is our number one priority, and we can continue to make it a safer place to work, visit and live by being as one and working together.
“We’ll be continuing to work closely with the local community, and I would like to stress to those in the area not to take any matters into their own hands. Officers in Oldham are continuing to unpick the investigation and those speculating on social media could potentially jeopardise all of our work.
“Again, it’s crucial that anyone with information contacts us as soon as possible. Information, as well as photos and videos, can be summited through our dedicated online portal here: https://mipp.police.uk/operation/06GMP22Q16-PO1.
Alternatively, call 101 or use our LiveChat service on our website at www.gmp.police.uk. Information can be given anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.