SOMERTON SHOOTING: Residents tell of crash and victims' terror
10:26am Thursday 5th September 2013 in News
GUN shots were fired during a terrifying car chase up a Newport street, before one vehicle was rammed off the road.
Eyewitnesses described three victims running from the scene on Somerton Road, one of them bleeding, calling ‘he’s shooting at us, he’s shooting at us’.
Gwent Police chief inspector Huw Nicholas said the incident involved members of “the criminal fraternity” in Newport, saying gun shots were fired following an altercation involving people in two vehicles.
Chief Insp Nicholas said all parties involved were known to each other, with two men in custody last night. It is believed they had been in the car that crashed.
The police yesterday refused to reveal the grounds for their arrest.
Officers were trying to locate the men in the other car, their vehicle and the gun used yesterday, with Somerton Road closed into the evening.
The incident happened at around 11.30pm on Tuesday night, just after bar workers at the Cross Hands Hotel on Chepstow Road had called last orders.
One drinker, who didn’t want to be named said: “I heard tyres screech and a big thud, so looked out of the window. It looked as though a Nissan 4x4 had chased a Ford Ka up Somerton Road and had shunted it into a metal electricity box as the KA driver put the brakes on.
“The three people from the Ka came running into the pub calling ‘He’s shooting at us, he’s shooting at us’. The girl was in a bad way, upset, she wanted to phone her mother, the one boy looked like he’d been shot in the shoulder and another refused to go in the ambulance unless he had two armed police with him.”
Another drinker said all three were in their 20s and described them asking for the police to be called before hiding behind the bar.
The pub’s manager Phil Bright said: “It was about 11.20pm and I was just closing up. There was this almighty crash, before they came running in saying they’d been shot at. We rang the police, they were very upset.”
The eyewitnesses described the 4x4 making off up Carey Road, which is on the other side of Chepstow Road.
Yesterday morning, most of Somerton Road was closed off from Cromwell Road at the bottom to the junction with Chepstow Road at the top.
Carey Road was also cordoned off opposite as well Gibbs Road and part of Beechwood Park as scenes of crime officers investigated.
The Ford Ka was left by the electricity box it had crashed into, facing towards Chepstow Road on the wrong side of the road. There was a large impact smash in the front windscreen, while the back windscreen had been smashed out and driver’s side was badly damaged.
Three patrol cars and an unmarked police car were also positioned on nearby Bilston Street throughout the day.
Barbara Booth of Chepstow Road said: “I heard a screech of brakes and then one hell of a bang. I came running out and saw steam coming from the Ka. A young girl came running from it into the pub shouting ‘I need a phone’.”
Another local resident, John Bees said: “I heard two shots, loud shots, like they were from a shotgun. A couple of seconds later, I heard a car braking, skidding before a heavy impact crunch.”
Sally Dee was unable to get children Chloe, nine and Lilly, four, to school because of the police cordons. She said: “I heard an almighty bang last night, it sounded like fireworks going off.”
Mike Smith of Libeneth Road said: “It’s very surreal around here with all the area taped off and the markings where they are investigating.”
Police said the three people in the Ford Ka were taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
A spokeswoman said a call was received at 11.30pm on Tuesday, about an incident involving two vehicles.
She said: “Pellets were fired from what is believed, at this time, to have been a shot gun from vehicle one at vehicle two, causing vehicle two to crash."
There were three occupants travelling in vehicle two, two men and a woman. All three were taken to hospital for treatment. The woman with a back injury and one of the men with minor injuries as a result of the collision, and the second man with a head injury as a result of the pellets being fired. This injuries were not serious and they were all discharged yesterday.
A Welsh Ambulance Service spokeswoman said: “We were called at 11.45pm (Tuesday) to reports of an incident near the Crosshands pub on Chepstow Road in Newport.
“We sent a rapid response vehicle and two emergency ambulances to the scene, and a man with a head injury, and a second man and a woman with minor injuries, were taken to the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport.”
We received a call at approximately 11.30pm on Tuesday 3rd September reporting an incident that occurred near the Cross Hands Pub on Chepstow Road, Newport.
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