Police in Leeds have arrested a 37-year-old man in connection with the shooting of a female officer in Hyde Park on Wednesday, December 4.
The incident took place shortly after 4am on Cardigan Road.
West Yorkshire Police arrested James Leslie, 37, on Wood Lane, Headingley at 10.10am following a police manhunt. Leslie is believed to live on Cardigan Road.
Two uniformed officers were attacked by a man at the address who fired at them, while attending a call out for a disturbance.
A police spokesperson said: “A female officer received serious non-life threatening injuries. [She] is currently undergoing treatment in hospital.”
[See end of article for the full audio from a police statement given at the scene.]
Third year Geology student, Tim Cullen told LS: “I woke up to the sound of Alsatians at about 7am this morning and about ten police cars and three ambulances arrived in front of the flats and put up police tape everywhere. There were also two armed police officers and a forensics team. It’s quite shocking because you never expect this kind of thing to happen where you live, it’s especially scary to find out our neighbours are armed.”
A Leeds College of Art student, who lives in the surrounding area, said: “We’re quite shocked. When we heard how close it was, we were surprised, especially after the murder that happened the other week. We feel safe that the guy has been caught.”
Asked whether he felt recent incidents such as the recent homicide on Brudenell Road represented a rise in violent crime in Leeds, Councillor for Headingley Neil Walshaw said: “The incident on Brudenell Road was a horrible one, but it was a very specific one, very different from the one we’ve had today.”
Walshaw added that incidents involving firearms were “incredibly rare” in Leeds and praised the “excellent response from West Yorkshire Police” in “making an arrest before the morning was out.”
During a press statement on the scene, Chief Superintendent Paul Money said: “Initial inquiries were made at a near-by address to arrest an individual for a criminal-damage type offence. On arrival at the suspect’s address, a firearm was discharged at the officers, and a female officer has sustained serious injuries to her face, her neck and her right hand. Her condition is described as poorly, but stable and not life-threatening. Her male colleague was uninjured, and thankfully was able to provide immediate care.”
He added: “Additional officers were dispatched to the scene, and earlier this morning as a consequence of support from those officers and members of the public, a suspect has been arrested. A firearm has also been recovered.”
“We are not looking for anybody else in relation with this incident.”
The officer could not confirm the type of firearm used in the attack, nor how many shots were fired.
The full audio from Chief Superintendent Money’s statement can be heard below:
photos: Miranda Inman, Sean Hayes