Breaking Manchester Salford

A serial sex attacker has jailed for sexually assaulting a number of women

 
On Friday at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court, Joshua Etchells of Lowton Road, Sale was jailed for 14 months after pleading guilty to 20 counts of sexual assault by touching. Following his release he will also be required to sign the sex offenders register for 10 years.
The charges against Etchells relate to a series of sexual assaults that occurred between 1 March 2021 and 7 March 2021 on canal tow paths along the Bridgewater Canal, the River Mersey and along the Trans Pennine Trail.
Etchells assaulted 19 women and a teenage girl across the seven day period, including nine women on one day alone.
His offending followed a similar pattern for all of his victims in that they were all either walking or running, often alone, down the tow path when Etchells would approach them from behind on a bicycle.
As he approached and began to pass the women, he would then either grab or slap their bottom and quickly flee the scene on his bike. On two occasions, Etchells approached the victim head on and cycled past them before turning around and cycling back towards them from behind. As he passed, he sexually assaulted them.
Following an assault on the Trans Pennine Trail, one of Etchell’s victims along with a family member decided to drive around the local area to locate him. As they drove around they spotted a male she was confident was Etchells and she shouted out the window at him.
Ignoring her shouts, she managed to take photographs of him, which she then passed over to police.
A full investigation was launched by GMP and on Saturday 13 March, plain-clothed officers were on patrol in an unmarked vehicle in Sale and noticed Etchells on his bike and identified him as the male wanted for multiple sexual assaults.
He was subsequently arrested and his bike – that matched the description of the bicycle reported to police – was seized.
Following interview Etchells was subsequently charged.