Dad tells of terror after being held hostage and told he would be killed

A dad has spoken of his terror after being held hostage by a trio he met on a night out.

Tuesday, 31st May 2016, 8:27 am
Updated Tuesday, 31st May 2016, 9:33 am

Paul Wallace was pinned to the floor of a flat in North Shore and told he would be killed if he didn’t hand over his bank card and PIN.

He was beaten and bruised, after around £300 was withdrawn from his account at a nearby cash machine.

The 42-year-old today said: “I was out-numbered and in no fit state to defend myself.

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“They said they would kill me if I didn’t get them the right PIN.”

Mr Wallace, of Grange Park, was drinking in Walkabout in Queen Street, in Blackpool town centre, at around 1am on Wednesday when he met the trio — two men and a woman, all thought to be in their late 20s or early 30s.

They got talking and left to go to takeaway Eatabout, where they used a test-your-strength machine, before spending some time at nightclub Flamingo.

Mr Wallace, who lives with his girlfriend and 10-year-old daughter, was then invited back to a flat in Clifford Street for more drinks.

“They’d planned out what they were going to do,” he told The Gazette.

“We weren’t there long before they turned on me. We were downstairs in the front room and one of them started calling me names.

“Before I knew it I was on the floor and they were pinning me down with their feet on my head.”

After reluctantly handing over his debit card, Mr Wallace said the woman left to go to a cash machine at McColl’s, on the corner of Egerton Road and Cheltenham Road, where it is hoped a camera caught vital evidence.

Bank records show almost £300 was taken out in two withdrawals; one at 5.25am and one at 5.26am.

It was only when she returned that Mr Wallace, who works as a cleaner, managed to escape.

“They let me go and I just made a run for it,” he said.

“I feel lucky because it could have gone wrong while they were kicking me in the head.

“My life is worth more than money.”

Mr Wallace ran to a public phone box on the corner of Egerton Road and Ashburton Road and dialled 999 at 5.40am.

Police and paramedics were called, and Mr Wallace was sent home to sober up after being given a check-up.

Later that morning, he made a statement at the Bonny Street police station, before calling on people to be more wary on nights out.

He added: “You don’t think things through sometimes but they didn’t say to me, ‘come back to ours for a punch up’.

“What they did to me was cowardly. I work and I have a family.

“They will be bums without a penny to their name.

“They saw me as an easy target.”

A spokesman for Lancashire Police confirmed the robbery was reported, and said enquiries were ongoing.

Detectives working on the case would not comment.