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Four stabbed in clashes at end of Luton Carnival

Published 30/05/2016

Police arrested five people after disorder marred the end of the Luton Carnival
Police arrested five people after disorder marred the end of the Luton Carnival

Four people were stabbed and several others injured during a series of violent clashes following this year's Luton Carnival.

Bedfordshire Police said one man and five youths were arrested during "scenes of disarray" which broke out in St George's Square at about 8.15pm on Sunday.

Video footage of the violence posted on social media showed officers using batons to break up fights in the town centre and a victim being cuffed to the ground by a hooded youth near a police van.

Hazel Simmons, leader of Luton Council, said she was appalled at the fighting, which forced police to form several cordons to keep groups of youths apart.

Pledging her support to the strongest punishment possible for those involved in the violence, Ms Simmons added: "We should all be sitting back and celebrating what was a fantastic spectacle with thousands of people coming out and enjoying a wonderful carnival event in Wardown Park.

"Instead, we have to condemn the actions of a small minority of people who have shown complete and utter disrespect to the town and its people."

Bedfordshire Police Superintendent Mark Upex said officers were working hard to determine the "trigger" of the disorder, which broke out more than two hours after the carnival ended without incident.

Mr Upex said: "A small minority of people inflicted violent behaviour on the town, attempting to ruin a day that had been celebrated in harmony.

"The aggressive actions that caused this disorder will be thoroughly and methodically investigated and we are committed to ensuring those responsible will be identified and punished accordingly."

Officers have recovered several weapons from the scene and investigators are analysing the CCTV.

Mr Upex added: "It is disappointing that such a fantastic day of celebration in the town was followed by these scenes of disarray but we would like to reassure the public that order has been restored and additional resources remain in the town.

"It is important that we receive as much information and evidence as possible to assist the investigation.

"We are aware that the public were taking photos and videos of the incident and we urge anyone that has anything that can support us to come forward.

"I would like to thank our officers again for their hard work and bravery and bringing order and safety back to the town in a difficult environment."

Anyone with information, including photos and videos that could assist the investigation, is asked to contact police on 101.

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