Baby Boy Who Died After Being Rescued From River Irwell Is Named

Sara C Nelson

A baby boy who died after he was rescued from a river in Manchester has been named locally.

Emma Blood, of Radcliffe, wrote on Facebook that her son, Zakari Bennett, had been killed in an incident on Wednesday afternoon.

A 22-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in custody for questioning, said Greater Manchester Police.

It is understood police are treating the matter as a domestic incident, but detectives are continuing to appeal for information and believe that parts of the incident may have been captured on camera by members of the public.

In a now deleted post, Blood said she “sat with him for hours” after she rushed to A&E to be with the 11-month-old.

Floral tributes have been left at the scene after the tragedy 

She added: “I am alive - although I wish I was dead instead.”

Police were called to reports that a child was in the River Irwell in Radcliffe, Greater Manchester, shortly before 4.25pm on Wednesday.

The boy was recovered from the water by firefighters who attended the scene near to Blackburn Street along with other emergency services.

He was rushed to hospital but died a short time later.

Detective Inspector Wes Knights, of Greater Manchester Police, said: “This is an incredibly tragic incident which has taken the life of a baby boy, who we believe is only around 11-months-old.

“His family have understandably been left devastated by what has happened and we have specially trained officers providing them with support at this difficult time.

“We currently have a suspect in custody who will be questioned by detectives later today.

“However, our investigation does not stop there and we need anybody with information to come forward and help us get answers for this little boy’s loved ones.

The baby boy who died after being rescued from the River Irwell has been locally named as Zakari Bennett

“We know that there were a significant number of witnesses to what happened and I want to urge those people to come forward and provide us with as much detail as they can.

“It’s also possible that other people may have information about the circumstances leading up to the incident, as we know the baby had been in the area for a number of hours beforehand.

“Given the time this happened and the large number of witnesses present, we know that some of the incident was captured in images or on video so I want ask people to provide these to the investigation team.”

Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 8797 or 101 quoting incident number 1930 of 11/09/2019, or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

A spokeswoman for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said: “We were called at 4.28pm to a rescue of a person in water in Pilkington Way, Radcliffe.

“Fire engines from Whitefield, Farnworth and Eccles attended the incident along with a water incident unit from Eccles.

“Crews rescued one casualty who was then handed over to NWAS (North West Ambulance Service).”

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