On the Beat

Suspicious fires

Police are treating two fires that destroyed property owned by a tow truck operator in Lismore as suspicious and are keen to hear from any members of the public who may have information.

The first blaze occurred on Friday, February 10, at a shed owned by Cheepa Towing & Salvage in Lockett Street, the main workshop and holding yard of the business.

The second fire occurred six days later in Elliott Road, South Lismore, at a storage facility destroying cars and tyres. Owner Matt Bidner estimates the damage is around $100,000.

"I'm still numb," Matt said. "I have some ideas (about who lit the fires) but I don't know whether I'm right, wrong or otherwise until someone's caught or we have more information. All I know is I didn't do it myself so it must be someone."

Police say they are pursuing a number of lines of inquiry and both scenes have been examined by crime scene specialist fire investigators and forensic teams. Anyone who has information is urged to contact Lismore Police on 6626 0599.

High-speed chase

Police are appealing to the public for help following a high-speed chase between Casino and Lismore during which the occupants threw items from the car at police before dumping the vehicle in North Lismore.

On Saturday, February 18, around 12.25am police began pursuing a white Ford Fairlane allegedly travelling at high speed towards Lismore on the Bruxner Highway, reaching speeds of up to 170km/h, before police called off the pursuit in a 60km/h zone due to safety reasons.

Dogs were brought in to search the area where the car was later dumped in North Lismore and three men aged 20, 19 and 17 were taken to Lismore Police Station. Two men were released while the 19 year old was charged with breach of bail.

Police are appealing for anyone who witnessed the pursuit, or three men acting suspiciously in the vicinity of a white Ford Fairlane at North Lismore during the early hours of the morning, to contact Lismore Police or Crime Stoppers.

Sexual assault

Police are urging women to be careful after a 37-year-old woman was allegedly sexually assaulted in Zadoc Street, Lismore, around 4.30am on Saturday morning.

The woman was allegedly grabbed from behind by a male and physically and sexually assaulted before going to Lismore Police Station and being taken to Lismore Base Hospital for treatment.

Police have spoken to the woman and are doing forensic tests. They are appealing for anyone who saw any suspicious activity to contact them.

Police are also urging women to stick to well lit areas, walk in groups if possible, don't listen to music and be aware of your surroundings, and change direction if you suspect you're being followed.

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