Birmingham & Black Country

Walsall halal butchers shop arson 'not racial hate crime'

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Media captionPolice believe the arson attack is not religiously or racially motivated

An arson attack at a halal butchers was not a racially or religiously-motivated hate crime, police have said.

A worker was left bruised and the store suffered fire damage in the incident on Wednesbury Road, Pleck, Walsall, at 17:25 BST on Monday.

West Midlands Police has released CCTV images of a man they want to speak to.

Det Insp Greg Evans said early enquiries suggested the attack was "not based on the victim's membership of any ethnic group".

Image caption The store was damaged extensively, West Midlands Police said

He said: "This was a shocking attack on a store in broad daylight and one which could easily have resulted in serious injuries or fatalities."

The CCTV footage shows a man igniting bottles of liquid at a bus shelter moments before they were hurled through the entrance.

Police said the suspect is believed to be a white man, about 6ft tall, who was wearing a distinctive two-tone blue jacket.

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