UK & World News

  • 4 February 2014, 10:49

Woman Falls To Death After Man Cleared Of Rape

A woman has died after falling from a shopping centre roof days after a man accused of raping her was acquitted by a jury.

Police negotiators were trying to talk to her when she apparently jumped.

The 41-year-old woman fell from the car park roof at the Wheatsheaf centre in Rochdale.

Ambulance staff were on stand-by and she was taken to hospital in a life-threatening condition but later died.

On Friday, the woman appeared angry and upset when specially trained officers told her at home of the acquittal earlier in the day, said Greater Manchester Police.

She was offered support by the officers.

Later that evening, the woman called police in a distressed state and officers returned to her home along with ambulance staff.

She was calmer when the officers went there, and they again gave her advice and made another referral to partner agencies helping to give her support.

Greater Manchester Police have referred the matter to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

And a full investigation will be launched to establish the circumstances surrounding her death.

Assistant Chief Constable Dawn Copley said: "The woman had been a complainant in a case that recently concluded at court.

"And throughout that process specially trained officers from Greater Manchester Police had been providing her with regular support and advice.

"This is a terribly sad end to what has been a long and difficult case."

Sky's Martin Brunt said the woman had twice given evidence as an alleged victim of rape.

He added: "A man was acquitted on Friday at the end of a trial first, and then a re-trial.

"She was one of seven alleged rape victims and the man was cleared of all charges.

"It's difficult to think that there isn't a connection between her experience in the witness box and the events this morning."

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