Four shot and one stabbed in market town pub: Police guard at hospital after violent disturbance when group of men were refused entry. Danny Penman reports

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The Independent Online
POLICE yesterday placed a guard at the bedside of one victim of a violent disturbance in the market town of Aylesbury in which four people were shot and one was stabbed. The incident happened in a pub in the Buckinghamshire town late on Thursday night.

The injured were taken to the nearby Stoke Mandeville hospital. Of the four who were shot, one was last night in a 'critical' condition in intensive care, while two others were being treated and were said to be 'comfortable'. The fourth was discharged after treatment.

The man who was stabbed was arrested and is under police guard. He was said to be in a 'comfortable' condition.

The violence flared at 11.40pm at Mangrove Jack's, an Australian theme pub, in the town's 15th-century Kingsbury Square, which is the centre of the town's nightlife. A group of about 15 men, one reportedly armed with a machete, left the nearby Lobster Pot pub and tried to gain entry to Mangrove Jack's. Five of the group had been barred from the pub the previous week. A doorman who had allegedly previously received death threats, tried to prevent their entry. A struggle broke out during which shots were fired.

Members of the group tried to smash their way into the pub while those inside barricaded themselves. All ground floor windows were smashed and two window frames ripped out.

Yesterday, police were combing through the wreckage of the pub and searching drains for weapons.

Mangrove Jack's does not have a bad reputation in the town. 'This town's got a bit of a reputation for fighting. All the other pubs have got a reputation but this one is different. It has a good regular crowd - they are young and they are good people,' said Cyril Fletcher who visits the pub regularly. David Lydington, MP for the town, said: 'What happened was not at all typical of Aylesbury.'

The pub has a dance floor upstairs and attracts a young crowd who come for dance music or karaoke. David Benyon, the manager, said: 'It was not instigated by anyone who was drinking in here or anyone from here. They are a good crowd.'

Anthony Whinup, 47, a bouncer of Milton Keynes, will appear at Chiltern magistrates court, Amersham, today charged with attempted murder and possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.

(Photograph omitted)

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