Man who sparked fear in Wythenshawe after making false rape claim is given fixed penalty notice

A Wythenshawe man who made a false allegation he had been raped has been given a fixed penalty notice.

Police have refused to name the 22-year-old man who made the false claim in October which sparked concern in Wythenshawe.

Officers were called to Greenwood Road in the early hours of Friday 18 October 2013, after the man claimed he was the victim of a sex attack.

Following detailed enquiries however, police say officers now believe the rape could not have taken place. A 22-year-old man has been given a fixed penalty notice for wasting police time.

Victims of sexual offences are given lifelong anonymity but lose that right if they are charged with offences relating to making a false claim.

But when the Wythenshawe Reporter asked for the name of the bogus victim, a spokesperson for Greater Manchester Police said: “Like all other forces we do not give out the names of people who have been given fixed penalty notices.”

Fixed penalty notices were introduced in the 1950s for parking offences and are often used to deal with anti-social behaviour.

Superintendent Sarah Jones, from Wythenshawe police, said: “This would have naturally been a worrying incident for the community therefore I hope this news gives them reassurance.

“A substantial amount of time went into investigating the incident, but officers also had to work very hard to reassure a community already concerned by a number of other reports of sex offences in the area. Those who lie run the risk of creating unease and anxiety for everyone else.

“This does not change the fact that we take all reports of rape seriously and investigate thoroughly and without prejudice, which can be demonstrated by our significant investment in relation to this report.

“Incidents such as this detract our resources away from genuine reports that need our valuable time.

“Greater Manchester Police encourages anyone who has been a victim of rape or any sort of sexual abuse to come forward, but I must also stress the importance of providing police with genuine reports due to the time we devote to investigating these cases.

“I hope this does not deter victims from coming forward to police. We have specially-trained officers who give a tremendous amount of time and support to anyone who has been a victim of rape and we work closely with the St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre. We can not only help you, but also put your attacker behind bars.”

Victims can refer themselves to St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre on 0161 276 6515. The centre in Manchester provides a comprehensive and coordinated forensic, counselling and medical aftercare service to anyone in Greater Manchester who has experienced rape or sexual assault.

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