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Officer draws his gun in confrontation with man during Belfast house search

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A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

The Police Ombudsman has been informed after a plain clothed PSNI officer drew his firearm on a man during an incident in west Belfast yesterday morning.

Police had been conducting a search of a house in Glenbawn Avenue at the time.

The man is believed to have turned up at the premises during the search, and walked off down the street before reappearing 10 minutes later brandishing a long plank of wood studded with nails.

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A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

A plain clothes detective draws his pistol and takes aim at a male attempting to attack police at the scene of a security operation in the Glenbawn Avenue area of west Belfast

According to witnesses the man then proceeded to run at an officer, wielding the wood as a weapon, before the officer drew his weapon and pointed it in his direction.

At that point the man took off with up to nine police officers in pursuit before jumping over a fence and disappearing into trees.

At one stage a female attempted to block the officer holding the weapon and a search was launched for the individual in the surrounding area.

It is understood it is the second time that the house has been searched in the last two months.

A PSNI spokesperson confirmed: "Detectives at Musgrave CID, assisted by Tactical Support Group (TSG), conducted searches in west Belfast this morning (Sunday, May 17) under the Justice and Security Act.

"During the search of a property in the Glenbawn Avenue area, a male wielding a post studded with nails confronted an officer who subsequently drew his firearm.

"The attacker then made off on foot."

In a separate incident a security alert in west Belfast ended after police and army technical officers declared a suspicious item discovered was a hoax.

The item, which resembled a pipe bomb, was found near a house in Clonard Gardens at around 9.45am on Sunday morning.

Sergeant McKinley said: "We're grateful to local people, many of whom have had their Sunday disrupted, for their patience as we worked to make the area safe."

Belfast Telegraph