Police drop charges against Manchester United's Mason Greenwood after a year of investigation
The 21-year-old forward has been suspended by Manchester United since January 2022
Charges against Manchester United forward Mason Greenwood have been dropped by police, just over a year since his arrest.
Greenwood was arrested on suspicion of raping and assaulting a woman on January 30, 2022, and again a few days later on suspicion of sexual assault and threats to kill.
He was suspended by Manchester United at the time, and has not appeared in a matchday squad or trained with the club since.
In October 2022, he was charged with attempted rape, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and controlling and coercive behaviour, and in November a court date was set for November 2023.
However, on Thursday, Greater Manchester Police released a statement that "Criminal proceedings against a 21-year-old man in connection with an investigation opened in January 2022 have today been discontinued by the CPS [Crown Prosecution Service]."
Chief Superintendent Michaela Kerr, Greater Manchester Police’s Head of Public Protection, said: "Given the significant media coverage of this case, it is only fair that we share the news that the 21-year-old man, who had been arrested and charged in connection with an investigation opened in January 2022, no longer faces criminal proceedings in relation to this.
"The investigation team has remained in regular contact with the legal team, providing any updates of note, and so understand the rationale for the discontinuation of proceedings at this stage, and that this decision has not been taken lightly.
"Despite the media and public’s interest in this case, we have decided not to comment on it in any further detail.
"I would, however, like to use this opportunity to reiterate GMP’s commitment to investigating allegations of violence against women and girls and supporting those affected, regardless of their circumstances, throughout what can be a hard and upsetting time for them. An ever increasing number of officers are receiving specialist training and the force is more consistently utilising tools, available via the criminal justice system, to keep people safe and care for victims.
"If you feel you are or might be a victim, please don’t let this case put you off asking for help."
Greenwood's last match was a 1-0 win for Manchester United over West Ham on January 22, 2022. The club, where he is still under contract but is currently suspended, have yet to comment on the latest developments
UPDATE: Statement from a CPS spokesperson, via Times journalist Hannah Al-Othman (opens in new tab): "In this case a combination of the withdrawal of key witnesses and new material that came to light meant there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction. "In these circumstances, we are under a duty to stop the case."
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Conor Pope is the Online Editor of FourFourTwo, overseeing all digital content, and joined the team in February 2019. He plays football regularly, both on grass and artificial surfaces, and has a large, discerning and ever-growing collection of football shirts from around the world.
He supports Blackburn Rovers and holds a season ticket with south London non-league side Dulwich Hamlet. His main football passions include Tugay, the San Siro and only using a winter ball when it snows.