Shots fired at undercover police in north London amid rising attacks on officers

19 March 2021, 22:49 | Updated: 30 March 2021, 08:43

The police officers were shot at while undercover in Colindale
The police officers were shot at while undercover in Colindale. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

A group of undercover officers were shot at while chasing a group of men in north London amid rising attacks on members of the police.

Ten-plain clothed coppers were patrolling the Grahame Park Estate in Colindale on Thursday at around 7:10pm after being informed there was a large gathering in the area.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said the officers approached a group of six local men who immediately ran off, with the officers chasing them on foot.

During the pursuit, it is believed a firearm was discharged "a number of times" in the direction of the unarmed officers by one of the suspects.

Nobody was injured, although the coppers, from the Met's North West Violence Suppression Unit, were said to have been left "shaken" by the incident.

Detectives are now appealing for information and witnesses following the shooting.

Armed response vehicles and other police resources were sent to the scene and a thorough search of the area was conducted. A Section 60 order was implemented overnight until 9am on Friday.

Detective Chief Inspector Gemma Alger said: “The message is clear that any levels of violence against our colleagues who serve the public and keep our communities safe will not be tolerated. We are committed to finding those involved and fully investigating the circumstances.

“The repercussions of this split-second action could have been grave - we could potentially have been dealing with a murder investigation. Nobody should go to work fearing that they may never return home.

“We are seeking the help of the public to identify the group of around six males who are believed to have resorted to extreme violence when pursued by police."

Detectives are asking anyone with information or security, dashcam or doorcam footage to get in touch.

There have been 7,140 recorded assaults on Met Police officers over the past 12 months – an increase of 19.1 per cent on the previous year.

Police have warned that incidents of this type can have long-term physical and psychological effects on officers.

Anyone who witnessed the incident, or who has information about those involved, is urged to call 101 or Tweet @MetCC quoting CAD6602/18MAR. Information can also be provided anonymously to Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111 or visiting crimestoppers_uk.org.

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