Earlier today a 50-year old man is believed to have taken hostages in a siege at an office on Tottenham Court Road. The individual has now been arrested, and the situation has calmed. Read below for our coverage of the story.
3.10pm: The police have now arrested the man, and are now searching the building. The Metropolitan Police are not aware of any hostages.
2.30pm update: The man at the centre of the siege has been named by Sky and other sources as Michael Green, either 49 or 50 years old, possibly from Hemel Hempstead. @hullstephen has spoken with eyewitness Abby Baafi (see her interviewed below) has told him that there are no more hostages, although there is no further confirmation on this. Police are said to be “encouraged” that Mr. Green hasn’t hurt anybody during the siege, which has now lasted for over 2.5 hours.
2.15pm update: A statement from the Metropolitan Police:
“Officers are in attendance at an incident in Tottenham Court Road where a man, believed to be aged 49 years old, is causing a disturbance. Police were called at 11.59 on Friday 27 April to an office building on Tottenham Court Road.
Items, including electrical equipment, have been thrown out of a fifth-floor window. A 300m cordon has been put in place and a negotiator is on scene.
Police would advise people to keep clear of the area due to congestion. There are no reported injuries at this time.
It is unclear if there are other people in the building.”
1.30pm update: The office in which this is taking place is reportedly a a logistics company that issues licences for HGV drivers. Latest (unverified) rumours suggest that four people have been taken hostage. Here’s a video showing equipment being thrown out of the window by four people.
1pm update: @hullstephen, who works for the Huffington Post in an office that was evacuated, is in the area and reporting on the developments; he has spoken to a woman who said that a “man came into our office strapped up with 4 canisters threatening to blow himself up”. Here’s the video:
MPSCamden report that “The man in #TCR Tottenham Court Road is throwing items from a 5th floor window. A 100 metre cordon is in place.”
Lots of other rumours too, as tends to happen when fast-moving stories and Twitter-fuelled imaginations combine. More as it comes in.
Original story: there’s some kind of incident occurring at the northern end of Tottenham Court Road, which (according to various reports on Twitter) may involve some kind of bomb scare or a hostage situation, and certainly has seen computers and office equipment being thrown out of a window (as shown in this picture). We’ll update this story with more when we get it. For now there’s lots of (unverified) talk on the #TCR hashtag.