Two women seriously injured in Burnley Marks & Spencer stabbing

2 December 2020, 13:57 | Updated: 3 December 2020, 11:20

Two women were stabbed inside an M&S
Two women were stabbed inside an M&S. Picture: Screengrab

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Two women have been seriously injured in a stabbing at a Marks & Spencer store in Burnley.

A 57-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after the attack in St James's Street at 9.30am on Wednesday.

Quick-thinking members of the public detained the suspect at the scene and have since been praised by police for their "brave actions".

The two victims, a member of staff in her 40s and a shopper in her 60s, were rushed to hospital. Their injuries are not thought to be life threatening.

A police spokesman said the stabbing was not being treated as a terrorist incident, although counter-terror detectives were leading the investigation due to comments made at the scene.

A knife was recovered and officers have stepped up patrols in the area, police added.

Superintendent Stasia Osiowy said: "At this time we are keeping an open mind as to motivation but what I can say is that we are considering the mental health background of the man we have arrested.

"I would like to appeal to members of the public who may have seen or filmed this morning's incident, or who have information which could assist, to get in touch with us.

"I would like to thank those members of the public who acted very quickly, and without regard to their own safety, this morning in order to detain the attacker.

"Without their brave actions this incident, while serious, could have been so much worse."

A spokesman for Lancashire Police said earlier: "Two women received injuries which are thankfully not thought to be life threatening at this time.

"They have been taken to hospital for treatment.

"Police officers were quickly on the scene and a 57-year-old local man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and is currently in custody.

"Police inquiries are ongoing. Anyone with information or concerns can approach an officer."

Police have appealed for anyone with information or video footage to call 101 quoting log 0313 of December 2 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.