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Last Updated: Friday, 18 August 2006, 20:19 GMT 21:19 UK
Man shot during police incident
Scene of shooting in Rugeley
The scene has been sealed off while inquiries continue
A man has been shot outside a school after an incident involving police.

An armed unit was called at 1500 BST on Friday to Burnthill Lane in Rugeley, Staffordshire, where a man with a firearm was waiting in a car.

Reports suggest the man was told three times to lower his gun before shots were fired.

Staffordshire Police said the man was shot in the hand and that no-one else was injured. A man was later arrested on suspicion of making threats to kill.

The front of the school, which has an access road to a leisure centre at its rear, was cordoned off.

'Lot of commotion'

Staffordshire Police refused to confirm that their officers were responsible for the shooting.

However the Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating, as is routine if police injure a member of the public.

Map

James McDowell was in the back garden with his wife when he heard the incident unfold.

He told BBC News: "We heard four shots, then we heard dogs barking, and there was a lot of commotion and a lot of noise from the shouting going on."

A neighbour, who asked not to be named, said she believed the incident involved a man rowing with his estranged wife over their young children.

She said: "All we know is there was a woman and her estranged husband and their children, and the father's been shot."

The woman said the children were aged about eight or nine and their mother was in her 30s.

She added: "They did live in the road as a family but they've all moved on now. I got the impression they've been separated for some time."

She said the school was closed for the summer holidays and there were no children there. Local residents have also reported seeing a police helicopter flying over the school for several hours in the afternoon.

The wounded man remains seriously ill in Staffordshire General Hospital. His injuries are not thought to be life-threatening.


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