Police detain woman under Mental Health Act after child is stabbed to death in Bolton park

The suspect was chased and detained by a member of the public who witnesses the horrifying attack

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Suspect has been detained under the Mental Health Act
Suspect has been detained under the Mental Health Act

A woman who was arrested on suspicion of stabbing a seven-year-old girl to death in a random attack in Greater Manchester has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

The woman allegedly attacked the youngster with a knife as she and her family were enjoying a stroll on Mother’s Day in Queen Park in Bolton.

The suspect was not known to the victim or her family and police said it appeared to have been an entirely motiveless attack.

A member of the public who witnessed the horrifying incident bravely chased and tackled the woman and held her until the police arrived.

Paramedics battled to save the little girl, who had received multiple stab wounds, but she was pronounced dead a short time later.

The alleged attacker, was arrested on suspicion of murder, but Greater Manchester Police said she was now being held under the Mental Health Act while the investigation continues.

The girl’s family were said to be absolutely distraught as were members of the emergency services and witnesses who had been in the park at the time.  

Russ Jackson, the Assistant Chief Constable of GMP said: “The woman arrested on Sunday 22 March 2020 at the scene of the attack on the little girl in Bolton has now been detained under the Mental Health Act.  

“We have informed the family of the woman’s detention. They are understandably distraught over what happened yesterday and we will continue to support them with family liaison officers in the coming months.  

“It is hard to describe how terrible this incident was, the attack happened in front of the parents of this little girl who had taken her out yesterday afternoon to enjoy the spring sun and play in the park.  

“Having seen this horrendous attack, a member of the public bravely chased after the woman and detained her until police arrived and arrested her. I would like to thank him for his actions which enabled us to quickly arrest her and prevent anything else from happening.  

“Several officers who attended the park were very young in service in the police, some with only weeks on independent police patrol. They and all the officers who went to the scene are incredibly upset over what has happened and all of us have this little girl and her family in our thoughts.  

“I want to stress that this is not an end to the criminal investigation, we will consider the evidence and consult with the Crown Prosecution Service and if appropriate we will be seeking criminal charges.”