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Thursday, February 2, 2023

Shoppers evacuated amid ‘knifeman’ alert at UK supermarket

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A man has been arrested after a major police operation following the evacuation of a supermarket.

West Midlands Police said the suspect was detained following an area search after reports of a man armed with a knife at Sainsbury’s in Blackheath, West Midlands.

A police spokesman said no injuries had been reported but confirmed that several nearby roads had been closed, including Halesowen Street, John Street and Union Street.

Fire crews also attended the incident at about 12.10pm on Saturday.

A police spokeswoman said she was unable to comment on claims that a gas cannister had been set off in a toilet at the store, prompting fears of an explosion.

The man was detained after armed officers and a police helicopter were deployed to the area.

In a statement confirming a fire had been set inside toilets at the shop, Chief Inspector Paul Minor said: “The store remains closed while we examine the scene and assess the cause of the fire.

“The man is in custody and his motives remain unclear. However, we do not believe this to be related to any terror threat.”

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