A delivery driver claims she was told she would be raped by a man, who flew into a rage over where she’d parked her van.
DPD worker Nicola Banks said she’d pulled up outside a property to deliver a package when a man came out of a neighbouring house. The 46-year-old claims the man – armed with a metal bar – launched a torrent of abuse and damaged her van, forcing her to flee in panic.
As a result, she’s now had to quit what she called “the only job I’ve ever loved”.
Police are now investigating, reports Stoke-on-Trent Live, and DPD has also launched a probe into the incident, which happened in Congleton earlier this month.
Nicola said she had parked up and gone to the delivery address, but that before she’d even knocked on the door a man appeared at his door and became aggressive, claiming she had “damaged his property”.
She said the man was on a mobile phone call at the time, and that it was on loudspeaker. Nicola added: “He said, ‘Me and my brother are going to get you …’ He said they’d rape me, both of them.
“My heart was in my mouth at this point. He started spitting and then he chased me into the van. He had a bar and he smashed the back of the van. I was in such a state that I didn’t even know if I could drive. I went round the corner and pulled up and rang 999.”
Nicola is unhappy that it took police eight days to speak to her for a second time and arrest the suspect. She added: “You think the police are there but they’re not. That’s hurt me.”
Nicola said that she has since felt she had no option but to quit the job, adding. “You are alone and at so much risk. People who deliver money, they have all that protection. Why can’t we do that when we’ve got just as much value in that van alone? I personally think they should give them some sort of security or a panic device, not just for women, but for men as well.
“It takes a lot to shake me up. I loved my job, I loved the stress, I loved the people, no two days were the same. But this has really shaken me up and massively traumatised me. I shouldn’t have to walk away from a job that I love.”
Nicola added she was disappointed that the police had not collected evidence from her, despite it being nearly a fortnight since the incident. She said the man had spat at her and the spit had landed on her clothes.
She said: “They said ‘Somebody will be in touch in due course’. I’ve got forensics on my jumper ready – it’s still here in a plastic bag. I feel massively let down.”
Cheshire Police did not respond to questions as to why evidence had not been collected from Nicola.
A DPD spokesman said an investigation was underway.
The spokesman added: “We are treating this incident very seriously indeed. It is completely unacceptable for our drivers to face hostility while doing their job.
“We are aware that the driver had contacted the police immediately, which was the correct procedure and there is also a full DPD investigation underway in parallel. We have procedures in place to protect and support drivers in situations such as this, including placing a delivery ban on certain addresses where drivers could be at risk.”
A Cheshire Police spokesman said a 39-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of affray, adding: “He has since been bailed pending further enquiries. Officers are continuing to conduct enquiries in relation to the incident.”
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