Suspect shot dead by police after ‘terror incident’ near London Bridge
Rob Picheta, CNN
(CNN) — A man with a hoax device strapped to him has been shot dead in central London by police officers in a terrorist incident that’s left a number of people injured, some seriously.
Officers have not commented further on the motive for the attack near London Bridge, but Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu told a press conference on Friday afternoon that they were enhancing patrols in the area and across the city in response.
Video filmed at the scene by an eyewitness showed a man being wrestled to the ground by members of the public. The incident comes more than two years after eight people were killed and dozens more wounded in a terror attack at London Bridge.
Lloyd Griffiths, 35, was on a bus on the bridge on Friday as the attack unfolded. He told CNN he saw an altercation as several people tried to wrestle a man with a knife before police intervened.
“I saw a shine on a knife or metal blade, it was startling. It was large blade, it wasn’t small, and then I was locked on the bus, people tried to tackle to man trying to fight him, ordinary people jumping out of the car, trying to fight him,” Griffiths told CNN.
“Then police ran over with guns, screaming,” before shooting the man, Griffiths added. A large number of emergency vehicles quickly arrived on the scene, with many people evacuated from the area.
London mayor Sadiq Khan praised the “breathtaking heroism” of “ordinary Londoners” who risked their lives to intervene in the incident.
“We are resolute, we stand united in the face of terrorism and we will not allow anybody to divide us,” Khan said in a press conference.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was “being kept updated on the incident at London Bridge and want to thank the police and all emergency services for their immediate response.”
Earlier, Jinnat Ui Hasan told CNN he was in a meeting in a building near the incident when he heard “more than five” gunshots.
Elsewhere, Stevie Beer, 26, told CNN that her place of work which overlooks the bridge was in lockdown Friday afternoon.
“A colleague out for lunch messaged to say there had been an incident on London Bridge and he was unable to cross back over the river. I went straight to the window and saw hundreds of people running off the bridge down Tooley Street,” Beer told CNN.
“People looked so panicked. It was haunting. There were at least half a dozen police cars and halted buses. Our building is now on lock down but we’ve not been given any concrete information,” she added.
A white lorry was seen stationary across multiple lanes of traffic in the middle of the bridge, which armed police approached after the incident. It was unclear whether the vehicle is related to the attack.
Other videos from the scene showed people evacuating pubs near the bridge. London Bridge is a busy area of the city which houses several restaurants, bars and businesses and is near Borough Market.
Guardian columnist Owen Jones told CNN: “People were running …. they’d been told to urgently evacuate the area.”
“I have friends who have been evacuated from their places of work … others (are) in lockdown,” added Jones, who said police cordoned off a “sizeable” area around the bridge.
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