Town Centre Roof Standoff Ends After 29 Hours

Chester St was closed off for over 29 hours since midday yesterday after two youths gained access to buildings and roof areas. The incident has now ended, however lots of damage remains in the area.

Police brought the incident to a safe conclusion when the offenders gave themselves up following extensive negotiations with specially trained officers. Both offenders, aged 18 and 19 have been arrested on suspicion of a number of offences, including public order and have been taken into custody at Wrexham police station.

Superintendant Sacha Hatchett said: “North Wales Police would like to thank the public, residents and local businesses for their co-operation and patience during in this incident. We appreciate that there was disruption in Chester St. However, during the course of the incident the safety of all involved was our prime concern.

“This was an irresponsible as well as a criminal act which involved an incremental response and our officers had to be dressed in specialist public order uniforms to deal with it. While no member of the public was harmed, a police officer was struck by debris thrown by the offenders and she received minor injuries.”

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The incident finally came to a close just before 4pm, with two men being taken into custody. They were taken in the van, pictured above, across the road to Wrexham Police Station.

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A skylight was smashed and roof areas have suffered damage.

Pictures from our afternoon updates are below: lads-on-rooftop police-enter-buildingpolice-advancepolice-ready-to-go 4.15pm Police and the youths are having a stand off on the roof. As of 15:45 the two youths are now on a pitched roof above the opticians on Chester St. Police made a move on the buildings, entering two on Chester St just before 3pm

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As of 2:40 pm the boys are still on the roof after spending most of yesterday and the night up there. We understand it is not any form of protest, with local rumours saying the men are known to the police. Police are in surrounding buildings trying to talk to the youths, but with no joy. image At 12:10 a building alarm started sounding in Chester St as banging was heard and more debris thrown down. Further pictures of the scene and damage in town: debris-in-street lads-on-roof lads-on-chimmney roof-damage-slates The police helicopter has returned as of 10am and is circled the area for an hour. It since has returned. Chief Inspector Nick Evans has said; “The safety of the public, police officers and the offenders is our prime concern. We appreciate that the situation is causing some disruption, but we would ask for the public’s understanding and cooperation in allowing our trained negotiators at the scene to bring this incident to a safe and peaceful resolution.” 20130425-100608.jpg

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Cordons have been pushed back further blocking the front of the library, holding back groups of onlookers however people are being allowed to access the library itself: image

Negotiations are ongoing however items that appear to be slates are still being thrown from the roof. The two youths are moving between two buildings. Access to Chester St is still restricted from the Saith Seren to Waterworld. Staff who work in Chester St are congregated awaiting permission to enter their offices.

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Some police are now in full protective gear carrying helmets and shields but that is due to things previously being thrown from the roof. So far we have counted ten police vehicles in and around the north side of the cordon with officers having been brought in from Llandudno. An ambulance has been placed on standby close to the library:

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The cordon has been extended to cover the entire front of the Guildhall and access to the library field. Pictures from just after 8am this morning:

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Reports from yesterday and overnight are below:

Richard Jones told us several police vehicles were present as he went past around 1am, with a light being shone towards the roof in question. Around that time the police helicopter was over town, however we do not know if that was connected. One unconfirmed report to us said that police had provided food to the people on the roof from KFC.

At one point we are told the two youths had gone to sleep close to the warm air vent up there. The police operation has been scaled back from earlier in the day however there is still emergency services on scene, with some items being thrown from the roof in to Chester St. One of the three men involved is thought to have been involved in the similar incident two weeks ago.

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Police have also restricted access around the rear by the Council buildings and the library field so anyone venturing this direction are advised to take a different route. image

The three tracksuit clad youngsters were earlier communicating with a group on the ground with both parties appearing to be very light hearted about what was going on with declarations of love being exchanged.

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Later in the afternoon police extended the cordon and removed some of their resource from the area however an ambulance was placed in the library car park on standby.

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Discussion of this incident has been ongoing in our Wrexham Forums – you can read them and take part by clicking here!