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Gloucestershire Business News

UPDATE: Stroud man charged with kidnap

Police have arrested a man from Stroud in connection with an incident last week where a teenage girl was grabbed in Chalford.

The 36-year-old, named as Robert Hall, has been charged with one count of kidnap in relation to the incident.

He has been remanded in police custody and was due to appear at Cheltenham Magistrates' Court today.

Detective sergeant Jon Youdan said: "We've had a great response from the local community wanting to help the investigation with people calling in and providing information on this concerning incident.

"An arrest is a positive step, however we're still urging for anyone who believes they may have information, dashcam footage or CCTV which could help the investigation to please make contact."

At around 6pm on Tuesday 2 June a teenage girl was grabbed by a man while she had been running on a lane which runs alongside the Thames and Severn Canal by Three Groves Wood. The lane comes off the High Street and Marley Lane on the edge of Chalford.

The suspect was described as a white man, of a stocky build, aged in his 30s or 40s, had dark stubbly hair which was balding and had dark facial hair.

He was seen wearing a grey hooded top with black writing, black jogging bottoms and light blue rubber gloves.

The teenage girl was not physically injured after she managed to run away, but is understandably very shaken by the incident.

DS Youdan said in an earlier appeal: "The Three Groves Wood has been busy with walkers due to the nice weather, and following calls we've had we believe he was seen previously in the area, and has travelled there in a vehicle.

"Therefore we're asking for anyone who has been in the woods over the past few days who may have seen this man previously, or the vehicle he travelled in, to contact us.

"You may have seen someone in this clothing and thought it was unusual due to the hot weather - although there was no reason to report this at the time, this information could now help our current investigation."

Investigating officers are also still keen to hear from the driver of a green Land Rover Defender which was parked nearby at the time - we don't believe they are a suspect, but they may have seen something if they were in the area at that time.

Anyone who saw the man, the vehicle or any suspicious behaviour in the area over the past week is asked to call police on 101 and quote incident 450 of 2 June.

Information can also be submitted to us online through this form by quoting the incident number: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/tua/tell-us-about/cor/tell-us-about-existing-case-report/.

You can also anonymously call independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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