Four shot at Birmingham club

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The Independent Online

Four people were shot and taken to hospital after gunfire broke out an urban music festival at a nightclub in Birmingham.

Three men aged 20, 23 and 25, and a 25-year-old woman were in a stable condition in hospital after suffering gun shot wounds. The incident occured at the The Custard Factory in Digbeth, where there were thousands of revellers, at around 1am yesterday.

As police and forensic science experts gathered evidence, fears were growing that the incident could spark a series of retaliation shootings in the weeks to come. Detective Chief Inspector Tim Bacon said: "In any incident involving guns, whenever firearms are used, there is always a possibility that people might seek to take the law into their own hands."

DI Tom Chisholm from Force CID said: "Police enquiries are ongoing and forensic examinations of the scene are underway. "We have a number of statements to take but the offender is described as a black male who may have been part of larger group."

Despite a spate of high profile cases in recent years, gun crime has been steadily decreasing. The latest figures from the Home Office show that firearms were involved in 0.3 per cent or one in every 330 crimes recorded by police in England and Wales last year. Handguns were used in 4,275 offences.