Sheffield mum’s fury after 'vulnerable' autistic son is attacked with machete by gang on Tinsley towpath

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"He put his hands out in self-defence and was cut on three or four fingers of his right hand. The nerves in his fingers were also cut."

An 18-year-old man with autism has been attacked by a gang of teenagers armed with a machete and knives in a Sheffield underpass, writes Marti Stelling. His distraught mother has claimed that this type of gang attack is commonplace in the area and that police aren’t doing enough to respond.

The canal towpath near Tinsley tram stop in Sheffield, where a 'vulnerable' 18-year-old with autism was attacked with a machete. Photo: Marti StellingThe canal towpath near Tinsley tram stop in Sheffield, where a 'vulnerable' 18-year-old with autism was attacked with a machete. Photo: Marti Stelling
The canal towpath near Tinsley tram stop in Sheffield, where a 'vulnerable' 18-year-old with autism was attacked with a machete. Photo: Marti Stelling | Marti Stelling

Speaking to Sheffield Wire, his mother, who wishes to remain anonymous, said her son is very vulnerable and has been bullied since secondary school for his race and learning disabilities.

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She said her son was approached by seven boys, four with knives, who were originally coming to attack his friend. The group of boys circled and attacked her son after his friend ran away.

She said: “He put his hands out in self-defence and was cut on three or four fingers of his right hand. The nerves in his fingers were also cut.

“He was left very upset and was asking me ‘why is it always me mum?'”

She added her vulnerable son, who has ADHD and autism, was “really struggling” since the attack.

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The incident took place in Tinsley last Monday, and the victim’s mother said there were gangs in the area who were “always bullying and always intimidating."

She went on to criticise the police, who she claimed took an hour to arrive and were waiting on an ambulance which didn’t appear.

She said the police ended up taking her son to A&E but have since failed to make any progress in the case.

“I am a very good citizen, but in return I don’t get help from the services I should get,” she said.

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South Yorkshire Police said that just after 5pm on Monday 13 November, a man was attacked with a machete on the canal towpath near to Tinsley tram stop.

The victim sustained minor injuries and was taken to hospital for treatment.

An investigation is currently ongoing, and officers are reviewing CCTV from the area.

South Yorkshire Police said: “The investigation officer has spoken directly with the victim’s mum and continues to provide regular updates on the investigation.”

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If you have any information about the incident, or were in the area at the time, please contact South Yorkshire Police by using their online reporting tool or calling 101. Please quote incident number 715 of 13 November.

You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or visit Crimestoppers-uk.org.

This story originally appeared on Sheffield Wire.