People in Oldbury have been demonstrating over the recent abduction of a young child.
Members of a community affected by the news of an alleged child kidnap at the weekend staged a demonstration in Oldbury last night.
The recently formed group ‘Sandwell United Parents’ held a vigil in a show of community support for two families whose children are at the centre of
an ongoing police investigation. Members of the group, and other residents living local to Bristnall Hall Road, gathered this evening outside Lowrey Court, which was the scene at which a 10-year-old boy was found on Sunday.
Inspector Ian Massey, responsible for policing in the Oldbury area, said: “We are aware of public concerns that have been raised, and a number of rumours that continue to spread amongst the community, regarding Lowrey Court.
“I would reiterate that the block of flats is owned by a housing association, and the flats are let to independent tenants. This is not a bail hostel or any other kind of managed premises as part of the criminal justice system.
“Some of the residents have lived there for many years, but as a result of the concerns within the community over the course of the past few days all of those residents have now opted to leave and have been re-housed, as a result of fear of reprisals at the premises.
“Therefore the flats are now vacant and have been secured pending consultation between the housing association and the community regarding their future.”
Michael Jonathan Jackson, of Bristnall Hall Road, Oldbury, is due to appear before Warley Magistrates Court today to face charges of kidnap, false imprisonment, threats to kill and sexual assault. The charges follow an incident in which a 10-year-old boy was reported as missing from Oldbury on Sunday morning, 13th November. The boy was later found at a local flat. The 49-year-old was also charged with a further count of child abduction. This relates to a separate incident on 14th September in which an 11-year-old girl from Oldbury was allegedly abducted.
In a statement released yesterday, Adullam Homes, the housing association responsible for Lowrey Court, said that they would review the property’s future and work with partners and the community regarding the existing demand for this type of housing in the neighbourhood, whilst working with residents on a new lettings plan.