Hereford & Worcester

Alan Giles: Absconded murderer search 'focused' around Alcester

Alan John Giles
Image caption Alan John Giles would have been eligible for parole next year

The hunt for a convicted killer who absconded from prison has been "focused" on an area of Warwickshire, police have said.

Officers believe Alan John Giles, who left HMP Hewell, near Redditch, on Monday, could be in Alcester or nearby.

The 56-year-old, formerly of Oldbury in the West Midlands, was serving two life sentences for murdering and kidnapping a 16-year-old boy in 1995.

Police said he may be sleeping rough and "should not be approached".

The Warwickshire and West Mercia police forces said information had led detectives to increase police resources in the Warwickshire town and step up their manhunt in surrounding areas.

Specialist search officers and dogs have been deployed.

Mental health concerns

Det Ch Insp Paul Judge said he wanted to "reassure the Alcester community and other people living nearby that there are a number of officers out and about in the area and we are doing all we can to get Alan Giles back in custody as soon as possible".

He said Giles "could be sleeping rough and may be using barns or other outbuildings to shelter" and that anyone harbouring the 56-year-old could be committing a crime and face serious consequences.

A police spokesman said the motive for the 56-year-old leaving the prison was not clear but detectives were "concerned about his state of mind".

Giles was jailed at Birmingham Crown Court in 1997 for murdering Kevin Ricketts two years earlier.

The former labourer killed the teenager in an apparent revenge attack after his victim's elder sister ended their relationship.

Kevin is believed to have been abducted while going to classes at South Birmingham College in January 1995.

Giles would have been eligible for parole next year.

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