Police investigating assaults and abuse of Knowsley Suites hotel staff and residents
Police have said they are investigating 10 crimes related to the Suites hotel in Knowsley, Merseyside, including assaults, malicious phone calls and verbal abuse of staff and residents.
According to Merseyside Police, on Saturday 11 February, several phone calls were made to the hotel, which were reportedly of a "racist and obscene nature". Following enquiries, a 51-year-old Kirkby man was arrested on Friday 17 February. He remains on conditional bail, while a decision to charge is sought from the CPS.
On Monday 27 February, two men were approached by a group of men in Broad Lane, Kirkby, who shouted threats and followed them into Southdene Park, before assaulting them.
On Tuesday 28 February at around 11.30pm, patrols were called to the East Lancashire Road at around 11.30pm to reports of a man being assaulted near to Home Bargains by two men on electric bikes armed with batons. The victim sustained superficial injuries to his leg. In both incidents, minor injuries were sustained by the victims. Both incidents are being treated as hate crimes, police said.
"Other incidents have been reported where people have been verbally abused near to the hotel. Enquiries are ongoing in relation to all these incidents," Knowsley community policing superintendent Karl Baldwin said.
"Violence, threats and harassment targeting anyone will not be tolerated, and are completely inexcusable. For residents and staff connected to the premises to be targeted is despicable, and we will continue to work closely with the premises, as well as our partners, residents and communities to ensure all information is acted upon."
The reports followed an incident on Friday 10 February, when protests at the hotel, which is reported to be housing asylum seekers, were infiltrated and violent disorder broke out, with fireworks thrown at officers and a police van set on fire. An officer and two members of the public received slight injuries. Fifteen arrests have been made in relation to the incident, with a 19-year-old charged with and pleaded guilty to violent disorder, who will be sentenced next month.
Photo: Brian A Jackson/Shutterstock