A “extremely violent” thug who has been on the run for two weeks may be sleeping rough and begging the public for money, police revealed today.
And detectives trying to track down missing Ivan Leach say they have also received intelligence that he has changed his appearance to try and avoid detection, including possibly growing a beard.
Leach, 47, also known as Lee Cyrus, went missing from North Sea Camp, Boston, on Tuesday, October 9 after going on day release.
Despite a large scale police search and numerous reported sightings he remains at large.
He was born in Preston but also has links to South Ribble.
Police are urging the public to be vigilant and today re-appealed for anyone with any information about his possible whereabouts to come forward.
Last week officers told the Evening Post it was possible Leach was being harboured by criminal associates in the city.
Around 12 sightings have been reported by members of the public in the past 14 days.
Today, Det Insp Keith Lee, of Preston CID, said: “Ivan Leach has been wanted for almost two weeks so we are concerned that he may be becoming increasingly desperate.
“We have intelligence to suggest he is now sporting a beard and looking unkempt which is a significant change in his appearance.
“It is possible that he is sleeping rough and approaching members of the public asking for money.
“He is a dangerous individual but I’d reassure people that we have extra patrols in the city and continue to have officers out looking for him 24/7.
“We follow up every potential sighting of him so I’d urge people to call police on 101 if you think you see him or know of his current whereabouts.
“We’ve been really encouraged by the response from the public but I would remind people that he is violent and should not be approached.
“The best possible outcome for himself, his family and all concerned is that he gives himself up.”
Leach was jailed in 2005 for robbing a 90 year old woman in Ribbleton. He was given a life sentence with a minimum tariff of five years. He also has convictions for burglary and robbery and assault.
His previous convictions include having sex with a 13-year-old schoolgirl and slashing a woman’s throat with a screwdriver.
Leach is described as white, around 5ft 11in tall, with a stocky build, cropped hair and hazel eyes.
Information can be passed to local police either in person or on 101.