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Echoes Of Bulger Case As Children Try To Kill Boy, 5

A GROUP of children aged 11 and 12, including two girls, abducted and tried to hang a five- year-old boy in a wood in West Yorkshire, police said yesterday.
Police refused to officially confirm the murder attempt, but officers said the boy had been strung up on the bough of a tree and survived only because the rope either broke or came loose.
The children face charges of attempted murder.
The case is certain to further inflame concerns in Britain about a youthful "yobbish" culture that sometimes seems out of control, with sub-teens becoming a serious concern.
Anthony Hinchliffe suffered horrific ligature-type marks around his neck after being abducted from his mother's garden in Dewsbury, police said. He was apparently hanged from a low bough in nearby woods in a spot known as Devil's Ditch.
After somehow getting free, he was found, confused and deeply distressed, by a cousin, Tracey Jones, 22.
The crime brought back terrible memories for Britons of the abduction and murder of toddler James Bulger by two 10-year-old boys, Robert Thompson and Jon Venables, in 1993. The two were convicted and jailed, but have since been released.
Police said they had arrested two girls aged 11 and 12 and three boys, two aged 12 and one aged 11, in relation to the attempted hanging of Anthony. Three more children were also being questioned.
Details only began to emerge 24 hours after Anthony was found with the rope marks on his neck and severe bruising to his body, as if he had either been beaten or resisted as the children tried to hang him.
He had been playing with a local girl he knew in his mother's front yard, not far from the woods. He played there regularly and never strayed, a neighbour said.
Tracey Jones said the boy had been taken by the girl he was playing with and she met up with a group of other children she described as a gang of kids.
West Yorkshire police said:
"Anthony's injuries look quite horrific - there were a number of bruises to his body and marks around his neck."
Anthony was released from hospital and allowed to go home with his mother.

Adelaide Advertiser (3-6-2005)
Bruce Wilson

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