Gang have pushed SIX cyclists into the Grand Union Canal in Paddington

Pete Bettell suffered cuts and bruises after being pushed into the canal (Pic: Facebook)

Pete Bettell suffered cuts and bruises after being pushed into the canal (Pic: Facebook) - Credit: Archant

Police investigating a random attack where a cyclist was pushed into the Grand Union Canal in Paddington are linking it to five similar incidents.

Mr Bettell fears his attackers could kill

Mr Bettell fears his attackers could kill - Credit: Archant

Pete Bettell, who lives in a canal boat in Kensal Rise, was cycling along the towpath of outside Brindley House on Alfred Road when he was shoved into the icy waters on February 23 at around 6.30pm.

He was rescued by a woman who he believes knows the two men who pushed him in.

Mr Bettell, who was treated for cuts and bruises before being discharged, said: “They (his attackers) are absolutely scum. They are psychopaths who need to be caught before they kill someone.

“My feet were clipped to my bicycle so I was struggling to free myself. If she hadn’t come to my rescue I dread to think what would have happened.”

Yesterday detectives revealed five other attacks took place last month around the same area and to date Mr Bettell was the last one.

The other cyclists were targeted on February 4 at 9.18pm, February 10 at 6.15pm, two took place the following day at 7.18pm and 8.45pm and another on February 17 at 6pm.

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Police patrols around the area have been increased.

Inspector Anna Brennan, who heads the Safer Neighbourhoods team in Westminster, said: “I would appeal directly to the persons responsible for these attacks to give serious thought to what they did, and just how dangerous it is. Pushing strangers into a canal is not funny, and could have very serious consequences.”

“Whilst the water is not particularly deep, it is still very dangerous for anyone who cannot swim or anyone who has suffered an injury.”

“Our work to reassure people using the area around the canal continues and officers are out patrolling and speaking to people and we are reviewing CCTV.”

The suspects, who are all black, are in their late teens or early 20s.

Any witnesses that haven’t already spoken to police, or anyone with any information should call detectives on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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