Police hunt for Hatfield girl's attacker

Hertfordshire Mercury, 16th March 1951


Hertfordshire Police yesterday appealed to the public for information which might help them in their four-day search for the ” thin-faced man with the glaring eyes ” who seized a 12-year-old Hatfield girl and drove off with her in a red sports car on Sunday evening .

The girl , Rosemary June Bates , who lives in a caravan at Birchwood Camp , was dumped from the car near her home 40 minutes later . The Police hunt began after Rosemary had reported she was walking home at the junction of Hertford Spur Road  and the Barnet By-Pass , Hatfield , with her 11-year-old friend , Anne Beatty , of Upperfield Road , Welwyn Garden City, at about 7 o’clock, when a man grabbed her and pushed her into the car.

She lost her shoes in the struggle. The car drove off . Anne ran to Mr Edgar Henson , of Birchwood Camp , and told him what had happened .

He telephoned the Police .

The girl told Police that the man tied her hands above her head with her long hair . She was dropped from the car in a distressed condition and in her stockinged feet , near where she was seized .

Superintendent Leonard Elwell , chief of Hertfordshire C.I.D. , is leading the inquiries . He told a Mercury reporter that the Police want to contact a man who was believed to have seen the red sports car with the girl in it on the St Albans Road , near The Horseshoes .


The man , he said , was believed to have waved to the car which over-shot a road junction , reversed , and turned into Sandpit Lane . ” We want that man to come forward . ” Supt Elwell said .

The car drove up Sandpit Lane and through a gate into a field at the back of the G.P.O. wireless station .. ” Anyone who saw the car in the field or lane is asked to help with information . “

Rosemary , who is an intelligent and attractive child , was back at school on Wednesday after recovering from her experience . She told a reporter , ” It was an ordeal , but I am getting over it now . “

The man , she said , kicked her on the heel and tripped her over before bundling her into the car . On the way back she tried to get out of the car at De Havillands  . ” The man told me , ‘ No, you live at the Camp.'” she said.

Every user of a red sports car in the Hatfield district is being questioned by C.I.D. officers in their search . ” We hope the public will co-operate. ” said Supt Elwell .

The police description of the car is a red sports  model , with canvas hood and celluloid side-screens .


The wanted man is described as being between 20 and 25 years , 5ft. 6in. to 5ft. 8in. tall , slim , with dark hair slightly waved and heavily greased . He has a long, thin face , thin, dark moustache, and glaring eyes .

He was wearing a brown rough tweed suit , cream or white shirt with brown pocket and buttons , gold bar tiepin , and wrist watch.

In his buttonhole was a blue enamel shield-shaped badge representing a figure similar to the Statue of Liberty .

The hunt was intensified  on Wednesday after a 16-year-old girl had reported a man in a red sports car had accosted her near her home at Shenley , seven miles from Hatfield , on Tuesday night .She refused to enter the car .

Detectives were sent to Hatfield to investigate any possible connection with the Hatfield offence. The hunt was still going on last night .











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