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Hainault stabbing: Everything we know as latest pictures of incident emerge

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A 14-year-old boy has died and two police officers have “significant injuries” after an attack near a Tube station in northeast London.

A man reportedly crashed a vehicle into a house in Thurlow Gardens, a road near Hainault tube station, shortly before 7am, and then allegedly stabbed a number of people, police said in a statement this morning.

Police originally said a 13-year-old boy had died after being stabbed. They later clarified that he was 14.

Here’s everything we know.

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Chief Superintendent Stuart Bell reads a statement to the media. Pic: PA

Full police statement – one confirmed dead

Chief Superintendent Bell: “You will be aware that a serious incident occurred here at this location this morning. Police and ambulance services were called and deployed to a number of casualties. It is with great sadness that I confirm that one of those injured in the incident, a 13-year-old boy, has died from their injuries. He was taken to hospital after being stabbed and sadly died a short while after.

“The child’s family are being supported firstly by my local officers and now with some specialist officers and everyone across the Met is keeping them in our thoughts at this unimaginably difficult time.

“The events of this morning are truly horrific and I cannot even begin to imagine how those affected must be feeling. My thoughts are with the injured, their families and the wider community as we all begin to come to terms with what has happened and try to understand what has happened here.

“I know that there will be, clearly and understandably, a desire for answers and an explanation as to what happened. Our investigation is in its very early stages and my officers are working right now to establish the full facts as a priority. And we will share what we can, when we can, with the wider community and of course with yourselves.

“A 36-year-old is currently in custody. He was Tasered here at the scene and arrested 22 minutes after the first call was made to police shortly before 7am this morning.

“I want to confirm at present that we do not believe there is any ongoing threat to the wider public and we’re not seeking any other persons. The incident does not appear to be linked to any act of terrorism.”

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Chief superintendent Stuart Bell giving his update

The chief superintendent added: “We know now that during the incident five people were injured – three members of the public and two of my local officers who were responding to the call. Two of those members of the public remain in hospital. Thankfully, their injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

“The two Met police officers are also currently in hospital with wounds. Both require surgery and have significant injuries, but we believe at this stage that they are not life-threatening. I commend the incredible bravery of not just the police officers but the other emergency responders who came to this scene this morning.

“I would ask anyone with information or any footage that would help us with this investigation to share that with us and call 101, please.

“I know the families of those involved, the local and wider community and many across London will want to know why this terrible incident occurred. And it’s our job to find that out. And we will. I am committed to providing those answers when we can. And I would ask for some patience while this important work is carried out. Thank you for your time.”

He then answered questions from journalists, when he revealed the suspect was arrested at the scene and that the attack is not believed to have been targeted.

Forensic investigators in Laing Close in Hainault/ Pic: PA
Image:
Forensic investigators in Hainault. Pic: PA

Suspect is in hospital

Assistant Commissioner Louisa Rolfe said in a later update that the suspect was in hospital having suffered “injuries” when his van collided with a building.

“He has been arrested on suspicion of murder at this time,” she added.

“Given his injuries, we have been unable to interview him.”

Addressing speculation on the suspect’s background, Ms Rolfe said police have carried out “extensive checks”.

“We have found no trace of a prior incident involving him so far,” she said.

New images show suspect being tackled by police

Pic: PA
RETRANSMITTED AMENDING BYLINE NUMBERPLATE AND FACES OF ARMED POLICE OFFICERS PIXELATED BY PA PICTURE DESK Handout footage from a doorbell camera of police officers after tasering and detaining a sword-wielding man in Hainault, north east London, after a 14-year-old boy died after being stabbed following an attack on members of the public and two police officers. Picture date: Tuesday April 30, 2024.
Image:
Pic: PA

RETRANSMITTED AMENDING BYLINE..NUMBERPLATE PIXELATED BY PA PICTURE DESK..Handout footage from a doorbell camera of police officers tasering a sword-wielding man in Hainault, north east London, after a 14-year-old boy died after being stabbed following an attack on members of the public and two police officers. Picture date: Tuesday April 30, 2024. PA Photo. See PA story POLICE Hainault. Photo credit should read: PA Wire
Image:
Pic: PA

Pic: PA
RETRANSMITTED AMENDING BYLINE NUMBERPLATE AND FACES OF ARMED POLICE OFFICERS PIXELATED BY PA PICTURE DESK Handout footage from a doorbell camera of police officers after tasering and detaining a sword-wielding man in Hainault, north east London, after a 14-year-old boy died after being stabbed following an attack on members of the public and two police officers. Picture date: Tuesday April 30, 2024.
Image:
Pic: PA

‘There was a stand-off down an alley – then a woman was stabbed’

Witnesses have shared their accounts of the attack this morning.

One man, who asked not to be named, said: “They [the police] went into the alley and there seemed to be some sort of a stand-off there where I heard this huge commotion, then I heard a scream.

“From that commotion, at least one person was knifed – I think it might have been a woman because I heard a woman scream and then some sort of sobbing sounds.

“I then heard a voice say something like ‘she’s been stabbed in the face’ or ‘we need assistance’ – you know, calling for medical back-up.”

He added he also heard the words “he’s got a massive knife” or “he’s got a massive sword”.

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Footage showing the man with a sword. Credit: @ell_pht

Local resident Silvia Ganceva told Sky News she heard “voices” in the morning outside her home, and her son asked her what was happening.

She said she told him “maybe someone is fighting” as she watched from the window, adding she was “scared” to go outside after she heard police arrive.

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Witnesses describe knife attack

Another witness said he heard shrieking that “sounded like police” at the time.

“It was like ‘Stop where you are, put that down, put that down’ – that kind of thing,” they said.

“I looked out the back window because the noise was coming from back there, I saw a bloke dressed in yellow jumping over some fences… then he went down an alley like he was going back onto the street again.

“I saw a policeman and policewoman – normal coppers with the short-sleeved shirts – who chased after him and they were shouting for him to put it down.”

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Police cordon around streets after sword attack

Another witness told Sky News they saw someone being given CPR and a man running out of a house, with a hand “bleeding quite badly”.

They added: “I was driving up New North Road just after 7am, it felt eerie and strange, people were scurrying about looking around, like they were on alert for something or someone.

“I spoke to a few guys who told me a man was on the run after stabbing people.

“It was very scary and not something you expect to happen on your doorstep.”

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‘A swift response’

Graham Wettone, a former police officer and policing expert, said it’s been a “swift response” from emergency services who have “secured the area”.

He said the police officers who responded to the emergency calls had most likely just started their shifts, as 7am is usually when the overnight officers switch with daytime ones.

“That call’s come in literally on change over, about 6.54am… so they probably ran out from their briefing… straight to the venue.”

He said the first unit on the scene may not have been aware the suspect was armed with a sword, suggesting they may have only known there was a road collision or disturbance at an address.

Mr Wettone added: “It depends on the information given to the emergency operator. It may well those initial officers have then been confronted with the suspect with the sword, and then called for additional units to support them.”

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