Beds, Herts & Bucks

Luton park siege shooting man dies at scene

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Media captionThe BBC's Nikki Jenkins describes the overnight stand-off with police

A man who shot himself in a park in Luton, Bedfordshire, following a stand-off with police, has died at the scene.

Police negotiations with the man in Leagrave Common started on Sunday night and continued into Monday.

The man, believed to be between 40 and 50 years old, died while being treated at the scene.

A gunshot was heard at about 1200 GMT by a BBC reporter and police said one of their officers may also have fired a shot.

A Bedfordshire Police spokesman said: "We confirm that the man involved in the shooting incident in the Sundon Park Road area of Luton today has been pronounced dead after being treated at the scene.

"It would appear at this time the man discharged a weapon on himself, a shotgun has been recovered at the scene and it appears that it was in his possession at the time."

An eyewitness had said the man was lying on the ground "surrounded by armed police and paramedics".

The stand-off started at about 2030 GMT on Sunday when a man was challenged by armed police. They suspected he was carrying a gun after receiving a 999 call.

Armed officers surrounded him and trained negotiators were brought in as police shut down the large open space.

They stayed with the man through the night and took him a takeaway meal.

A police cordon remains in place around the park between Sundon Park Road and Henge Way.

A Bedfordshire Police spokeswoman said the man discharged his weapon and a police firearms officer may also have fired a shot.

The spokeswoman added that the incident had begun after a member of the public dialled 999 to report a man in Wauluds Bank Drive with a gun on Sunday night.

Armed officers traced him to the playing fields where the lengthy stand-off developed.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) will be informed of the shooting in due course.

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