On Thursday, 18 March, at approximately 7.10pm, ten plain-clothed police officers from the Met’s North West Violence Suppression Unit were on patrol in the Grahame Park Estate in Colindale.
They were responding to information about a large gathering in the area.
The officers approached a group of approximately six males, believed to be local to the area, who immediately ran off. The officers gave chase on foot.
During this chase, it is believed that a firearm was discharged a number of times, by one of the suspects, towards the unarmed officers.
Fortunately nobody was injured, although the officers were understandably shaken by the incident.
Detectives are exploring a number of lines of enquiry but are urging the public to come forward with any information that could help to identify and locate those involved.
Police have made some arrests in relation to to the incident:
A 49-year-old man was arrested nearby on suspicion of constructive possession of a firearm*, assaulting an emergency worker and possession of cannabis. He is no longer believed to be linked to the suspect group of males.
A 33-year-old man was arrested on Sunday, 4 April at an address in Surrey. He has been bailed to return regarding the shooting. He was charged with possession with intent to supply a controlled substance and recalled to prison, where he remains.
A 26-year-old man was arrested on Tuesday, 6 April at an address in north London in relation to the incident. He has been bailed to return.
Detective Chief Inspector Gemma Alger, who is leading the investigation, said: “Any level of violence against officers who serve the public and keep our communities safe will not be tolerated. We are committed to finding those involved and taking all appropriate action against them.
“The repercussions of this split-second action could have been grave – we could potentially have been dealing with a murder investigation. Nobody should go to work fearing that they may never return home.
“The violence faced by officers as they work to keep Londoners safe is an ever-present concern.
“This is a busy estate and we are appealing for anyone with information that could help identify this group, no matter how small, to come forward. That includes security, dash cam or door cam footage, all of which could provide vital clues.”
Anyone who witnessed the incident, or who has information about those involved, is urged to call 101 or tweet @MetCC quoting CAD6602/18MAR.
Information can also be provided to Crimestoppers, 100 per cent anonymously, by calling 0800 555 111 or visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org
They are an independent charity and are not part of the police. They will not ask callers for their name and cannot trace the location of a call or the device used to visit their website.
In the past 12 months, there have been 7,191 recorded assaults on Met Police officers – an increase of 18.8% on the previous year.
The level and extent of violence faced by police in the execution of their duty is an ever-present concern among officers who work hard, daily, to keep Londoners safe.
In addition, incidents of this type can have long-term physical and psychological effects on officers.