From Guardian.co.ukVampire takes a bite out of Brum
By Sam Jones
Monday 17 January 2005, by Webmaster
Vampire takes a bite out of Brum
Urban myths have occasionally been known to nudge the boundaries of credibility, but the people of Birmingham are finding it difficult to laugh off the possibility that a vampire could be lurking in the city.
Stories about a man who stalks the streets, sinking his teeth into passers-by, began to emerge from the Ward End area of the city last month.
According to the rumours, he bit a man walking along the street, then pounced on neighbours who came to his aid. One woman is said to have had a "chunk" bitten out of her hand. Local media have since been inundated with calls from people in the city’s Saltley, Small Heath and Alum Rock areas, who have heard of attacks and of people being bitten after answering their front doors.
But West Midlands police believe they are dealing with a tall tale rather than a prowling bloodsucker.
They are baffled by the lack of forthcoming victims. "To date we have not received any reports from people stating they have been bitten. This appears to be an urban myth," a spokesman told the Birmingham Evening Mail. Those who claim to have seen the attacker say he is black and in his late 20s. Although police think he is probably nothing more than a bogeyman, some residents are no longer sure what to believe.
"All I’ve heard is that there’s a fellow who is going round attacking people like a dog and biting them," said Josephine McNally, who works at the Old Barley Mow pub in Ward End. "It does put the wind up you."
Word had also reached the Saltley community leisure centre yesterday. "I’ve heard that this guy’s a bit crazy and that he’s been biting people" said one employee.
"I heard the story in the barber’s the other day," said Father Anthony Rohan of the Holy Family Catholic church in Small Heath. "They asked me if I believed in vampires and I said no. Then the lollipop lady mentioned it to me as well.
"I’m not worried, though. I’ve got a lot of crucifixes in the house."
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