Wanted St Leonards man puts family at risk

Grant Searle, 26, is wanted on recall to prison.
Grant Searle, 26, is wanted on recall to prison.

Police say a wanted man put a young family at risk last week as he fled from officers seeking to arrest him.

Sussex Police say that at around 11.15am on Thursday (June 21), Hastings officers saw a man believed to be 26-year-old Grant Searle from St Leonards, who is wanted for recall to prison after a previous conviction for burglary.

Police say Searle realised officers were closing in on him and fled in a Volvo XC60 car, which had been reported stolen from Brighton.

In the dash to get away, the car collided with three other vehicles, including an Audi Q7 car driven by a 33-year-old local woman accompanied by her three-year-old and nine-month old sons, police said. As the Volvo headed west along Lower Park Road from its junction with Bethune Way, it also struck a parked Volkswagen Caddy van and a Renault Trafic van before coming to a halt.

The suspect then ran from the vehicle, dodging through woods and gardens to eventually evade capture, despite a search supported by a helicopter from the National Police Air Service.

No one was injured in the incident, but Chief Inspector Steve Curry, Hastings divisional police commander, said: "Given the manner of driving displayed it is fortunate that nothing more serious occurred.”

Grant Searle is thought to have recently been associating with another wanted men - Taylor Clarke – in the Hastings area. Clarke has a £500 reward on offer against him.

Chief Insp Curry added: "I would urge anyone seeing Searle or knowing of his whereabouts, or who may also have information concerning Clarke, to contact us immediately by phoning 999."

Details can also be passed online or by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Callers should quote Operation Spiderman.