A SEX assault suspect prompted 17-hour stand-off with police after heading onto a terraced roof when officers went to arrest him.

Police went to Heywood Street in Great Harwood at 5am today to arrest Timothy Bolchover, who they said was wanted on suspicion of a serious sexual assault.

Insp Stuart Bruce said that on arrival the 21-year-old fled to the roof through a sky-light.

He then refused to come down or talk with officers, Insp Bruce said.

Bolchover finally came down at around 10pm.

Bolchover's mother Linda Brazier, 44, of Ribblesdale Avenue, Accrington, said she wanted to give him a ‘good slap’ for going onto the roof.

She said: “He doesn’t have it in him to do terrible things, just silly things.

“We’re a good, strong family and we’ll definitely be here for him to help him.

“We won’t turn our backs on Tim.”

Bolchover could be seen drinking from a bottle and talking on his mobile phone for long periods while he was on the roof.

He was also attempting to talk to people on the ground but refused to act on police requests.

A police spokesman said officers had a warrant to arrest Timothy Bolchover but when they arrived at the address in Heywood Street he went onto the roof.

The street was closed off to motorists during the stand-off and residents were asked to keep away from their homes while he remained up there.