Blackpool Vic rape and murder suspect granted bailed

A Blackpool Victoria Hospital medic arrested on suspicion of murder and rape has been bailed until the end of the month.

Monday, 8th March 2021, 2:42 pm
Updated Monday, 8th March 2021, 3:14 pm
The unnamed healthcare professional was quizzed by detectives last week about the death of stroke unit patient Valerie Kneale two years ago. He was also questioned about two alleged rapes and an alleged sex attack on a colleague
The unnamed healthcare professional was quizzed by detectives last week about the death of stroke unit patient Valerie Kneale two years ago. He was also questioned about two alleged rapes and an alleged sex attack on a colleague

The unnamed healthcare professional was quizzed by detectives last week about the death of stroke unit patient Valerie Kneale two years ago.

He was also questioned about two alleged rapes and an alleged sex attack on a colleague.

The force said the man had been bailed on Thursday until March 31.

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Det Ch Insp Jill Johnston said the allegations were "complicated and sensitive", and the force was "committed to investigating thoroughly".

The man had been suspended by Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust prior to his arrest on Wednesday (March 3).

Mrs Kneale, 75, was found to have died from bleeding caused by a “non-medical-related internal injury” after a post-mortem examination was carried out during a separate probe into the suspected poisoning of patients on the stroke unit.

Detectives, who have arrested seven medics during their investigation, believe elderly patients were given prescription-only drugs to keep them heavily sedated at night.

Although the force has remained largely tight-lipped, at least eight potential victims were flagged up within the first weeks of the probe.

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