Rescue update: Suspected shoplifter stuck in mud up to his chest at Barking Creek

A suspected shoplifter fleeing police was detained by officers after getting stuck in mud up to his chest at Barking Creek.

The 22-year-old man ran through the town centre then jumped into the creek in Abbey Road in a desperate bid to evade arrest last night.

Officers threw a rope at him but he still tried to escape and began to sink, Barking and Dagenham Police said.

Firefighters were drafted in and managed to rescue him using mud mats as the tide came in.

A Met police spokesman told the Post: “They threw a rope to the man who held on to it, but he was still attempting to get away into the water as he sank further into the mud.

“The officers at the scene requested the fire brigade and tried to calm the man who was struggling deeper into the mud and protesting that he ‘did not want to be arrested’.”

Police spotted him in Axe Street at 7.30pm but he immediately began to run away.

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Officers chased him across Abbey Green, then Highbridge Road and finally Abbey Road where he jumped over a wall and into the creek.

Around 15 firefighters worked with police to rescue the man and he was finally brought from the creek at 8.40pm.

A Barking Fire Station spokesman said: “When we arrived, the guy was there up to his chest in mud. The tide was coming in.

“A specialist crew carried mud mats and they were used to help him to safety. As he was brought out police carried him away.”

“He was muddy, but safe and well,” the police spokesman added. “After being washed down by the fire brigade and provided with a clean set of clothes by police he was on his way home.

“Inquiries are now being made regarding an incident of shoplifting in connection with this person that took place earlier the same day.”