Rioters smash through Wolverhampton

Hundreds of rioters have rampaged through Wolverhampton city centre leaving a trail of smashed windows and shattered businesses, while police have also had reports of incidents in West Bromwich and Birmingham.

Hundreds of rioters have rampaged through Wolverhampton city centre leaving a trail of smashed windows and shattered businesses.

West Midlands Police also reported "pockets of disorder" across West Bromwich and Birmingham as youths continued the disturbances which have spread across the UK.

Shopkeepers in Wolverhampton have been left counting the cost after yobs hit Queen Street, Dudley Street, Wulfruna Street, Princess Street and Market Street.

Thousands of pounds of damage has been caused by the rioting, which started after youths congregated in Queen Square shortly after 4.30pm.

Up to 300 youths gathered there as riot police formed blockades in an attempt to cut off nearby Dudley Street.

A thunder flash was let off causing dozens to scatter and a man who appeared to be hurt was led away by police.

But within minutes windows had been smashed at stores across the city centre, including the Job Centre in Queen Street and Burton's menswear. The shutter at No 1 Pizza, in Market Street, was also torn, leaving shopkeepers unable to close the building.

Large groups of people played cat and mouse with riot police, who kept them on the move.

Further damage was caused to buildings in Market Street and Princess Street, with windows smashed at Royal Bank of Scotland, TA Henn jewellers, and the Tap 'n' Spile pub, while the windows were torn out at Coral bookmakers.

Around 5.30pm, the rioting hit Queen Street where several people were seen entering shops and looting goods including mobile phones.

Elsewhere,  West Midlands Police have closed off a number of roads in West Bromwich and sourrounding areas, they say "to contain any incidents of disorder".

A police statement said there had been"some reports of pockets of disorder in the West Midlands", including High Street, West Bromwich.

The statement said: "In West Bromwich, there is currently some disorder and two cars have been set on fire.

"Police are also aware of some pockets of disorder which have broken out in Birmingham city centre.

"Officers are monitoring all activity and will respond robustly to any criminal incidents across the West Midlands.

"West Midlands Police will not tolerate violent behaviour and will arrest any people who commit acts of violence or criminality. Offenders can expect to be put before the courts and punished appropriately.

"We have contingency plans in place tonight which will see 400 dedicated officers working extended shifts across the West Midlands, who will be able to respond to any situation that may develop, in addition to local officers who will continue to serve and protect their communities locally."

Police asked the public for images and videos of public disorder taken on mobile phones or cameras.

Anyone who can help can email directly to tellus@west-midlands.pnn.police.uk.

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