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Brave security guard dramatically saves hostage from knife wielding thug threatening to ‘behead’ man at mosque

A brave security guard has described the horrifying moment he disarmed a thug wielding a knife after he threatened to behead a man he was holding hostage at a mosque. Haidar Hamid, 22, ‘frog-marched’ a neighbour to Hull Mosque and Islamic Centre while holding a serrated knife to his throat and a Stanley knife in his other hand. With his victim bleeding from cuts to his cheek and chin, Hamid forced his head down in the mosque and asked: “Are you going to pray now?”

But he was spared further injury in a dramatic rescue by Ebrima Touray, 45, who was worshipper at the mosque and put himself in harm’s way to disarm Hamid.

Recalling the incident, Touray, a security guard at St Stephen’s shopping centre, told Hull Daily Mail1 : “I was at the mosque praying when I saw this guy walk in with his shoes on.

“Shoes are not allowed to be worn in any mosque and one of my friends kept telling him, ‘No shoes, no shoes’.

“When I looked back he hadn’t left but instead closed the door and that’s when I saw the knife in his hand.

“I saw the guy with him had a slice on his face, so I asked him, ‘Who did that to you ? Did he do this to you?’

“He nodded, so I told Hamid to put the knife away . At that point he said, ‘This is my knife’, and put it in his pocket.

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Hamid, of Albany Street, west Hull, has now been jailed for ten years

“My friend at the mosque was speaking Arabic to Hamid so I told him to keep his concentration and keep talking to him .

That’s when I managed to grab the knife off him.

“He ran off so I called the police, and I saw a guy pull up in a car shouting his name, and I told him he wasn’t taking him anywhere.

“He said he was from his hostel, but I wasn’t having that . He hadn’t protected him when he left with this guy with a knife, so I wasn’t going to let him protect him now.”

Asked by police why he had the knife, Hamid said “to cut off his head”. Hamid, of Albany Street, west Hull, has now been jailed for ten years as a judge commended Touray and fellow worshipper, Taha Mohammed, for their “extremely remarkable courage”.

Mohammed comforted the victim until police arrived, arrested Hamid and recovered the knives from the mosque in Berkeley Street, west Hull. Touray believes his 14 years’ experience as a security guard helped him talk Hamid out of further harming the victim.

“I knew I had to help when I saw what was happening,” he said.

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Incident happened at Hull Mosque and Islamic Centre

“If I didn’t he could have easily gone out and hurt someone in the street.

“My job helped me in the situation, because I knew what to do . I don’t think I would have gone as near him if not.

“But I think everyone needs to help out in some little bit when these things happen.

“I have been visiting this mosque for years and this is the first time anything like this has happened.

“This is a community we all have to live in.”

When Hamid was interviewed by police the day after the incident on September 9, last year, he said he was going to kill the man with one of the knives, and asked why, said: “To stop him doing bad things to me.”

He admitted kidnap, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and threatening with an offensive weapon.

References

  1. ^ Hull Daily Mail (www.hulldailymail.co.uk)

Homelessness activist cleared of attacking security guard at Manchester town hall

Homelessness activist Wesley Hall has been cleared of attacking a security guard in a bid to storm Manchester town hall1 .

Mr Hall, 34, was accused of giving G4S employee Mike Pickford a dead leg with a mop handle so protesters could get past security guards trying to stop them from staging a sit-in.

In the build-up to the April 2015 town hall confrontation, Mr Hall – founder of outreach project Manchester Angels – made a speech about cuts causing a 150 per cent increase in the city s homeless2 population, sharing a platform with Happy Mondays Bez in Piccadilly Gardens. After that the group moved on to the town hall, where Mr Hall was said to have led a charge on the Lloyd St entrance.

Jurors at Manchester Crown Court3 yesterday unanimously cleared Mr Hall of common assault and possessing an offensive weapon at the protest, after considering verdicts for less than two hours.

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Video from the demonstration outside the town hall in April 2015:

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Video footage is said to show the moment Mr Pickford s leg buckled and protesters surged past him into the building. It was alleged that this happened after Mr Hall, seen beckoning the crowd forward in the footage, twice jabbed Mr Pickford in the knee with the handle of a makeshift flag.

Mr Pickford identified Mr Hall after seeing his picture in the M.E.N. In his trial, Mr Hall told jurors that the group intended to sit in the ceremonial council headquarters for a peaceful protest , that he did not assault the worker, and that the flagpole did not come into contact with Mr Pickford s knee.

Wesley Hall

Following his arrest on suspicion of assault, Mr Hall told police he had been demonstrating to draw awareness to the impact cuts in funding have on mental health patients and the homeless. He told an officer: You re facilitating an embarrassing waste of public expenditure .

You could be out catching real criminals and paedophiles and people who are actually evil. Speaking in court about how he ended up at the town hall on the day of the rally – one of a number held up and down the country that day – he said, the intention was to go into the building, sit down and wait until a councillor came out and gave us some answers . Last year, Mr Hall, of Castle Street, Nelson, led a group who occupied Gary Neville s Stock Exchange building at Norfolk Street in the city centre .

But he was kicked out after other activists accused him of running the camp like a dictatorship , a claim he denied.

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Homelessness in Manchester

References

  1. ^ Manchester town hall (www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk)
  2. ^ homeless (www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk)
  3. ^ Manchester Crown Court (www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk)

Cop quits force and sets up a crime-fighting security firm in protest at police cutbacks

A police officer has quit the force he worked for to set up his own crime-fighting security firm.

Lewis Kearney, 32, resigned from his 12-year career with Essex Police1 because of his dismay at falling staff levels. He is now offering homeowners around-the-clock protection for the cost of 49.95 a month. He and his team will carry out rolling patrols and he has promised only to employ former cops.

Mr Kearney said: As Essex Police freely admit, extensive budget cuts2 have forced them to prioritise.

It was really hard to leave, it s all I ve known .

I d been doing it since I was 19 and it was part of who I am.

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Lewis Kearney’s patrol car looks similar to a police vehicle

It had just become impossible though, it was two steps forward and one step back.

My colleagues all feel the same, the police are haemorrhaging officers left right and centre.

I believe our services will greatly reduce the chances of someone becoming a victim of crimes such as burglar.

I believe we ll see a reduction in the numbers of crimes in the areas which we operate. Mr Kearney s new firm, Blueline Security, will begin providing private security patrols in Southend-on-Sea, Essex, from December 1. He has marked up his own vehicle with blue and yellow squares to mimic a police car but has remained within the law by not fitting blue lights.

Each of his patrol officers will be equipped with a body camera and security coverage will be provided seven days a week, 365 days a year. Other firms are already offering private security to residents but Mr Kearney s is the first to use only ex-police staff. He added: I personally policed Southend for several years and know it well, therefore I decided to launch the business there.

I plan to expand the patrols into the rest of Essex as soon as possible.

As police officers, we ve tried protecting entire towns before and we know how near impossible a task it is.

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Mr Kearney believes his service will ‘greatly reduce’ his customers’ chances of being burgled

Only by making our services exclusive can we deliver the results our members deserve.

Some of the money paid by homeowners will be donated to the Essex Air Ambulance and RNLI charities. A spokesman for Essex Police said: Private security firms are not new and police forces across the country work with them, community groups and partner organisations to prevent and reduce crime.

However, it is important that the public are not confused, whether deliberately or not, about what these firms do.

Crimes can only be recorded, investigated and solved if they are reported to the police.

UK Crime Stats found that from September 2015 to September this year there were 11,854 burglaries3 in Essex. A Freedom of Information request revealed only 1.7% of burglaries in Chelmsford, Essex, were solved between January and July this year.

A total of 650 incidents were reported but 549 cases have already been closed with no suspect identified.

References

  1. ^ Essex Police (www.mirror.co.uk)
  2. ^ budget cuts (www.mirror.co.uk)
  3. ^ burglaries (www.mirror.co.uk)