Police apologise after Wigan helicopter chase
Police bosses have apologised after residents were rudely awakened by loud halers and the force helicopter.
There were dramatic scenes in and around Orrell, Worsley Mesnes and Poolstock in the early hours of Friday morning as officers hunted two men in connection with a string of burglaries.
Within the space of two hours from 1am, six 999 calls were made relating to burglary and motor vehicle crime.
In almost all of the reports, doors had been smashed open, keys had been taken and cars had been stolen from the houses.
In the Orrell area, around 12.50am, a white Vauxhall Zafira was taken from an address. It has now been located.
When a house on Shelley Drive was broken into, less than an hour later, the keys were taken but the car was blocked in by another car, preventing it from being stolen.
There were attempted break-ins in Worsley Mesnes on Manse Gardens, Jackwood Close and Shakespeare Grove. Fortunately, nothing was stolen but damage was caused to the houses.
Shortly before 2.50am, another call had been made that offenders were in a house on Poolstock Lane.
The police helicopter, a police dog and officers with Tasers were deployed to the scene.
Two men aged 34 and 20 were arrested on suspicion of burglary and have since been released under investigation.
Chief Inspector Nicki Tompsett of GMP’s Wigan Borough, said: “The early hours of Friday morning were incredibly distressing, not only for the residents whose houses were broken into but for the whole community and putting a stop to this has been a district priority for us.
“Anytime the helicopter is deployed, it makes a great deal of noise and, at that time in the morning, it would have disrupted a lot of people sleeping but, it was absolutely necessary for us to make these arrests.
“Having your house burgled is so incredibly invasive and can take a long time to recover from, which is why we need people who have information to contact us so we can build a true picture of crime in the area and identify those responsible.”
Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 7259 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111. If a crime is happening or it is an emergency, call 999.