Armed police on scene of siege in Oxford street
Officers are negotiating following a shootout with an armed man.
A street in Oxford city centre is in lockdown following a shootout between police and an armed man.
Shots were fired from a residential property in Paradise Square and armed response officers returned fire.
Norfolk Road is closed while officers are negotiating with the suspect.
Armed response officers are at a residential property in Paradise Square following a report shortly after 1.15pm today that a man had access to a firearm.— TVP Oxford (@TVP_Oxford) May 7, 2018
Shots were fired from the property and police returned fire.
Officers are currently negotiating with a man.
Members of the public have been warned to avoid the area, but police say the incident is not being treated as terrorism.
A woman, who asked not to be named, said the gunfire was “scary”, but added the incident became “almost surreal” as the siege went on.
She was sat on her balcony when she heard loud bangs, shouting and dogs barking on Monday afternoon.
“After a second round it became apparent these were gunshots so I rushed inside,” she told the Press Association.
“There was a couple more shots, three spurts in total, still a lot of shouting and barking. I heard a man shout ‘show me your hands’ repeatedly.
“The shouting continued and only quietened down an hour later or so, between now and then there have been bursts of shouting, barks and helicopters.
“I’ve heard no more shots since though. The entire area outside my flat is sealed off, and there is a police officer with a dog stationed a few metres from the balcony.”
Janet Borgerson was in the nearby Hotel Malmaison when she heard “explosive cracks” she thought were holiday festivities before another series of “loud bangs“.
“Again, I thought the second round were firecrackers. I noticed hotel bar staff ushering people inside,” she told the Press Association.
Ms Borgerson, who is visiting the city from America, said guests were later told by an armed officer that they were “perfectly safe” and allowed to leave the hotel.
“Because the shooting was directly behind the hotel block in which my room is I did feel worried that someone with a larger weapon could be a threat.
“But the police were quickly on site and after 45 minutes or so inside, and then briefed by police, they seemed to have the shooter isolated,” she said.
“To the police after a short time, this was definitely a ‘keep calm and carry on’ moment.”
South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust said on Twitter that one patient is being assessed and treated for “non-life threatening injuries”.
Armed response officers responded to a report shortly after 1.15pm on Monday to a report that a man had access to a firearm, Thames Valley Police said.
We are currenly supporting @TVP_Oxford at a police incident in Paradise Square. One patient is currently being assessed & treated for non-life threatening injuries. Please follow @ThamesVP for further information.— SCAS (@SCAS999) May 7, 2018
Superintendent Joe Kidman said: “People in Oxford will notice an increased police presence in the area while officers are dealing with the incident, which is contained and taking place at a residential property.
“If you have any concerns or wish to raise anything please approach and speak to an officer or call the non-emergency number 101.”
The Westgate Centre is not within the police cordon and remains open as normal.