London

Oxford Street panic: Woman hurt after 'shots fired' false alarm

Smashed window at House of Fraser Image copyright Sadat Quoraishi
Image caption Police were called to Oxford Street on Boxing Day

A woman was injured when shoppers fled from London's Oxford Street after false reports of shots being fired.

The Metropolitan Police were called to the scene at 16:50 GMT and cordoned off an area around a smashed glass window at House of Fraser.

The police said that a woman received "non-life threatening injuries" as a result of a fall.

They added there was "nothing to indicate" that shots had been fired or a crime committed.

Image caption Officers cordoned off an area around a smashed glass window at House of Fraser

The BBC's James Waterhouse, who is at the scene, said two witnesses told him they saw three women run into the window, knocking displays over as they tried to leave.

He said a police officer told him "it was an accident" and said that "there was a panic and someone tried to get out on the inside".

One shopper spoke of "craziness in House of Fraser" on Twitter, adding that she had "never been in a stampede before", while another one posted there was a "stampede of people running".

BBC World Service reporter Faith Orr, who was passing by the scene in a taxi, said a "huge window" was "completely smashed" and that people had been evacuated.

House of Fraser told the BBC the store has now fully reopened.

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Media captionPolice separate teenagers at Westfield Stratford

Meanwhile, police were called to reports of disturbances at Westfield shopping centre in Stratford, east London.

Officers attended at about 14:30 on Tuesday and "groups causing the disorder were dispersed", a Met Police spokesman said.

A man was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon, the force added.

In a statement on Twitter, Westfield Stratford said the "minor disturbance" had been resolved.

"The centre was not evacuated and is trading normally," it added.

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