A 31-year-old man was shot and injured by police amid reports he was “running around with an axe.” Witnesses at the scene, close to Hull city centre, said they heard loud gunshots and then saw a man on the floor, surrounded by police with “blood gushing out of him”.
The incident started shortly after 9.20am today when armed officers were sent to the Post Office on Holderness Road following reports of concerns for the safety of the public, after a man was seen with an axe.
The chase ended at 9.37am, about a mile away, when the man was felled by two gunshots, apparently to the stomach and leg, in Francis Street, after being Tasered several times.
Fire officers later erected large screens in Francis Street while police stood guard at cordons erected around the area.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission began an independent investigation after the incident. The man is currently being treated at hospital.
An IPCC spokesman said: “IPCC investigators have been deployed to the scene and are attending police post-incident procedures.”
Lee Haywood, who was working opposite Charles Street heard the gunshots. He said: “It’s shocking. It was scary seeing all the police, then the ambulance came, it was mental. There must have been 20 police. My girlfriend works opposite and she told me her friend saw someone Tasered, he carried on, then they shot him, he had an axe apparently.”
Witnesses said the man was given time to put down the axe but he continued to “wave it around.”
Karen Palmer, from Sunny’s Café, on Francis Street, said: “A customer came in, she was looking out of the window of her business. She said they Tasered him, he wouldn’t go down. They shot him once and he was still acting up and they shot him again.”
A man near the scene, who did not want to be named, said he believed the injured man was his cousin.
He said his cousin suffers from mental health issues and has problems with drugs.
He said: “All I’ve heard is one of my friends rang me and said ‘Your cousin’s been running around with an axe and he’s been Tasered and they’ve shot him’. That’s all I know.
“I’m going to go and find out how he is now.”
A woman who identified herself only as Rachel, was on a training course, when she and fellow students heard gun shots. She said the man, in his 30s, was wriggling about on the pavement, blood pouring from two wounds, struggling with police.
“We heard screaming. There were six coppers on him trying to pin him down. He had four to six Taser prongs in his back. He was struggling and bleeding, it was just pouring out of him. His boxers were soaked in blood.”
Andre Foster, who was on the same course, added: “Blood was just pouring out of him like you don’t know what. The time it took for an ambulance to come was a joke.”
Chief Inspector Scott Young, from Humberside Police said this afternoon, said the incident has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission, which was standard practice in such incidents.
Extra patrols were being put on to reassure the public.
He added: “I would like to offer reassurance that we are not looking for anyone else in relation to this incident.”