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Detectives believe estate incidents may be linked

PUBLISHED: 16:45 29 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:45 24 August 2010

DETECTIVES probing a shooting on a housing estate two days after a mini-riot between rival gangs are investigating whether the incidents are connected. A man escaped injury after he was shot at as he left his home on Bentham Walk in St Raphael s estate, N

DETECTIVES probing a shooting on a housing estate two days after a mini-riot between rival gangs are investigating whether the incidents are connected.

A man escaped injury after he was shot at as he left his home on Bentham Walk in St Raphael's estate, Neasden, on Monday, October 19 at 9.50pm.

Two days before two men were stabbed on the Stonebridge Estate by groups of youths thought to be from the St Raphael's Estate and Church End Estate in Harlesden.

Operation Trident, the Met's specialist team that investigates gun crime in London, are probing the shooting in Bentham Walk and Det Con Paul Harris said they were looking into whether it was linked to the stabbings in Stonebridge.

He said: "There are a number of gang related things that could be tit-for-tat that we are looking into."

Tensions between the estates have been rising in recent months with youths wearing colour bandanas pertaining to where they live.

Those living in Stonebridge wear blue, St Raphael's youths were red and purple is the colour for Church End.

Mark Toland, Brent Police borough commander, said his officers were targeting 'hotspot' areas by increasing visible police patrols and using CCTV vans.

He added: "No further gang-related incidents were reported over the weekend during which we executed four firearms search warrants and 12 drugs warrants, one arrest was made for possession with intent to supply class A drugs.

"I want to take this opportunity to urge both parents and young people, that if they are worried about gang-related crime they should speak to someone, if not a police officer, a teacher or someone they trust, or alternatively they can contact Crimestoppers, an independent charity, anonymously on 0800 555 111."

Lauretta Scott, Brent Council's senior community safety officer for gun, knife and gang crime, said: "It is important to remember that the vast majority of young people in Brent are not involved in this type of behaviour.

"In the coming weeks young people across Brent will be given tips on being vigilant and how to keep themselves safe when they are going about their daily business."

Anyone with information about the shooting should call Operation trident on 020 8733 4774, information about the two stabbings on 020 8733 3709 or alternatively call Crimestoppers anonymously about either incidents on 0800 555 111.

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