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College Staff Praised For 'Bravery' After Tackling Armed Suspect In Crawley

College Staff Praised For 'Bravery' After Tackling Armed Suspect In Crawley

A knife and blank firing handgun were seized from the scene at Crawley College in West Sussex

Rebecca Shepherd

Rebecca Shepherd

This is the moment 'heroic' school staff tackled an armed suspect at a college in West Sussex:

The footage shows members of staff from Crawley College bravely jumping on top of the suspect during an incident on Monday afternoon (26 April).

Shortly after 3.10pm, police had received reports of shots being fired at the site. When officers got to the scene, the suspect - an 18-year-old man from Crawley - had been detained by two college employees: a teacher and a member of support staff.

A blank firing handgun and a knife were seized, and at 3.20pm the man was arrested on suspicion of firearms offences. He remains in custody at this stage.

PA
PA

The two staff members sustained minor injuries and they are now at home resting.

Vicki Illingworth, Principal of Crawley College, said in a statement given to LADbible: "I cannot praise the courage, resilience and support shown by our staff enough.

"They have been incredible and the care and compassion they shared with our students and with each other continues to fill me with admiration.

"We can confirm two members of our staff did sustain some minor injuries, which were not gunshot wounds.

"Their heroic actions - and the rapid response of emergency services - helped to protect our college community. They are both at home, resting, and we ask members of the media to respect their privacy at this time.

"Our priority is and remains the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff. Counselling services are available for all students and staff."

PA

Sussex Police also took the opportunity to recognise the bravery of the members of staff.

Chief Inspector Shane Baker, of the Crawley Neighbourhood Policing Team, saying: "I'd personally like to thank everyone who helped to quickly bring this incident to a safe conclusion, especially the two members of college staff whose heroics have not gone unnoticed.

"They put themselves in harm's way in order to protect their students, fellow employees and the wider public, and I am hugely grateful for their quick-thinking actions.

"During this, they sustained minor injuries - not gunshot wounds - and presented themselves to a walk-in medical centre. Thankfully, no other injuries were reported, and no damage was caused by the blank shots fired."

PA

Pupils and staff were evacuated to a safe space while police carried out a search of the buildings, assisted by the Explosive Ordnance Disposal. West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service and South East Coast Ambulance were also in attendance. Nothing suspicious was found.

Chief Inspector Baker went on to add: "We are treating this as an isolated incident which was not terror-related, and while we are not seeking anyone else in connection with it, we will continue to provide a high visibility police presence in the area for community reassurance."

Crawley College is assisting Sussex Police with its investigation, and has confirmed that the college will be closed until at least Thursday 29 April.

Anyone with information is urged to report it online or call 101, quoting Operation Reset.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, News, crime, UK