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Man armed with crossbow shot dead by police after breaking into Southwark home

A man wielding a crossbow has been shot dead by armed police after he broke into a property in south London.

The man forced his way into the home at Bywater Place, Southwark, just before 5am as police rushed to the scene.

The man, thought to be in his 30s, was armed with weapons including a crossbow and was threatening to hurt residents at the address, police say.

When he managed to break inside the property, police marksmen responded by opening fire, say police.

Paramedics provided first aid but the man died at the scene. Two occupants of the property sustained minor injuries during the incident.

Locals said they heard screaming and a man frantically banging on a door before police arrived at the scene in the early hours.

Armed police were called to the scene after the man threatened to hurt residents (Barney Davis/The Independent)
Armed police were called to the scene after the man threatened to hurt residents (Barney Davis/The Independent)

One off-duty paramedic told The Independent: “I heard screams early this morning but it sounded like a fox to me. I’ve lived here for three years and it is a quiet estate, really nice and safe usually. A crossbow is mad - so medieval.”

Another woman added: “We were woken up by some loud bangs and saw the police with sirens everywhere. People were shouting but it was chaotic and I couldn’t tell what was being said.”

One young girl told her father “Papa, I heard someone get shot.”

A 53-year-old witness said: “I heard a man slamming on a door; it woke me up. It was like he was trying to force his way in.

Police  forensic officers at the scene near Bywater Place in Surrey Quays (PA)
Police forensic officers at the scene near Bywater Place in Surrey Quays (PA)

“Then the police car arrived with sirens. It was about 5am I didn’t think it was party time or anything. I couldn’t hear what he was shouting but he was trying to get in. My daughter was awake said ‘Papa I heard someone get shot. There were gunshots.’

“I thought it could be a teror attack if he was shot. I have lived here for five years and I’ve never heard anyone get shot or even shout. It’s mostly families and young professionals here. It is shocking for us in our area, where will be next?”

A police cordon was up at Bywater Place on Tuesday morning, with a number of officers and vehicles in attendance.

A forensics team was also at the scene and have erected a tent as they investigate the incident.

Councillor Adam Hood, who represents Surrey Quays, in Southwark, said on X, formerly Twitter, said: “Deeply concerned by this news from Bywater Place. Details are still emerging but at this point I’m thankful to the fast response from emergency services.”

Detective Chief Superintendent Seb Adjei-Addoh, responsible for policing Southwark, said: “My thoughts are with all those affected by this incident.

 (PA)
(PA)

“I understand the local community will be concerned at the events that have taken place this morning. We will fully support the IOPC investigation into the full circumstances of what happened.”

A referral has been made to the police watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which has begun an independent investigation.

This is standard practice after any fatal shooting involving the police.