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BBC’s The Detectives: Family of axe attack victim share tributes following death earlier this year

Cameron Brooksbank’s family praised his bravery following the attack  (Supplied)
Cameron Brooksbank’s family praised his bravery following the attack (Supplied)

The family of a man who was a victim of a violent axe attack, which was portrayed in a BBC series, hope that his story will raise awareness of organised gang crime.

Cameron Brooksbank’s death was announced on the final episode of The Detectives: Taking Down an OCG, which follows a policing operation by Great Manchester Police as it attempts to take down what the force describes as Rochdales’s “most significant organised gang crime”.

Mr Brooksbank was attacked in the street in October 2017 in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.

The series, which concluded on Wednesday night (1 November), depicted Mr Brooksbank’s journey as he prepares to face his suspected attacker in court for a retrial and as he deals with his recovery.

At the end of the final episode of the series aired on Wednesday night (1 November), a photo of Brooksbank was shared, with the words: “In memory of Cameron Brooksbank 1998-2023.” The GMP had confirmed to the BBC that Mr Brooksbank had died on 18 June at the age of 24 and added that his death was not being treated as suspicious.

In a tribute, the family of Brooksbank said his death had “created such a huge and painful void” in their lives.

The final episode of BBC’s The Detectives paid tribute to Cameron Brooksbank (BBC)
The final episode of BBC’s The Detectives paid tribute to Cameron Brooksbank (BBC)

They called him “brave” and that they hoped his story would help raise some “much-needed awareness around this topic”.

"This has been the most terrible time for our family, but we are just one, of many, that are being supported by GMP, who are constantly being destroyed by these cruel, merciless drug gangs,” the statement said.

"Everyone can see first-hand how these members proactively target children into drug misuse and debt to become modern-day slaves.”

"Also, the bravery of the officers who put their lives on the line must never be taken for granted; they have been so caring and comforting."

"We are extremely proud of Cameron’s bravery and that his personal story will hopefully help raise some much-needed awareness around this topic," they said.

According to the BBC, the attack unfolded after a “minor road rage incident” involving a gang member. Several tree surgeons – Mr Brooksbank among them – were working close by and attempted to help a person before Brooksbank was hit twice with an axe. Brooksbank’s hand was almost severed and he required surgery to reattach it.

One man from Rochdale was jailed for 18 years for his part in the attack on the group of tree surgeons, while three of the five other men who went on trial were found guilty of violent disorder.