Man tried to snatch toddler from her mother's arms in Hampshire woodland

A MAN attempted to snatch a toddler from her mother’s arms while they were walking on a woodland footpath.

Friday, 26th April 2019, 5:24 pm
Updated Friday, 26th April 2019, 5:33 pm
The child was not hurt in the incident. Picture: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

The incident happened on The Spinney footpath on Priestley Road, Basingstoke, between 4pm and 4.30pm yesterday. 

The two year old girl was walking with her mother along the footpath in woodland that runs between North Hants Hospital and the Post Office sorting office.

The mother, who is in her 20s, was carrying the little girl when a man approached and attempted to pull the child out of her arms.

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The child was not hurt in the incident. Picture: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

He was unsuccessful and ran away from the scene. 

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A 25 year old man from Basingstoke has been identified and has been taken to a secure hospital unit.

Both the child and her mother were uninjured.

Police are hoping to speak to a man and a woman who were walking in the opposite direction at the time and saw what happened.

The man chased after the suspect who ran towards the car park for North Hants Hospital.

Basingstoke Chief Inspector Stuart Ratcliffe said: ‘I want to reassure the public that this was an extremely unusual and isolated incident.

‘We have identified a suspect who remains in a secure unit at this time and officers will be following this up robustly.

‘We would very much like to speak to the couple who were walking in the opposite direction and who witnessed this incident.’

If you saw what happened or you were in or around that location yesterday afternoon and saw anything unusual, please get in touch by calling police on the non-emergency 101 and quoting reference number 44190142475.