Shocking video footage shows Ely rioters hurling fireworks at police officers

  • Footage has emerged showing the scale of the disorder South Wales Police had to deal with after chaos broke out in Ely in Cardiff on Monday 22 May.

South Wales Police had to shield themselves on Monday evening after youths hurled fireworks and missiles at them as rioters took hold of streets in Ely.

The chaos broke out in Snowden Road, Cardiff, overnight after a fatal crash involving two teenage boys.

False rumours of a police chase that led to the crash involving the two teenagers sparked riots in the city, the local police and crime commissioner has said.

Tensions reached breaking point after officers were called to Snowden Road, at about 6pm on Monday evening.

A large crowd of people gathered, many wearing balaclavas and face masks, and were seen throwing objects at police and their vehicles.

Shortly before midnight, a car was set on fire, while a second vehicle was overturned and set alight.

A police helicopter, riot police and dogs were sent to the scene with officers from across South Wales brought in to respond to the incident.

Police have condemned the actions of what is believed to be around 100-150 people saying the level of violence towards emergency services and damage was totally unacceptable”.

Scenes of the destruction were live-streamed on YouTube and showed young people throwing fireworks, missiles and bricks at a line of police officers who were blocking one end of the street.

Officers now remain in Ely and are asking people to avoid it.

They've said there will be a higher police presence in the area over the coming days.

The chaos has been condemned by the First Minster, Mark Drakeford, who said he is "very concerned to see the upsetting reports from Ely overnight and my thoughts are with all those affected.

"We continue to monitor the situation to gain a fuller understanding of the circumstances."

Meanwhile Downing Street has said the scenes in Cardiff were “appalling and completely unacceptable”.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “The reports of disorder, violence, arson and specifically attacks on police officers are appalling and unacceptable.

“We remain grateful to the emergency services and first responders for all their support to the community and restoring order.”

South Wales Police have said the collision involving the two teenage boys "had already occurred when officers arrived".

The force have said arrests have been made but did not say exactly how many.

Specially-trained public order officers were deployed, including those from neighbouring police forces.

At 1.10am police said they were continuing to monitor and respond to "disorder in Ely", adding: "A number of vehicles have been set alight. Arrests are being made. A large police presence remains in the area."

Police, including mounted officers on horseback, were seen outside Ely police station in the early hours of Tuesday after suggestions it could be targeted.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Travis said: "First and foremost our thoughts are with families of the two boys who have died following the collision in Ely and with those affected by the disorder which followed.

"These are scenes we do not expect to see in our communities, particularly a close-knit community such as Ely.

"We received a large number of calls from residents who were understandably frightened by the actions of this large group who were intent on causing crime and disorder.

"The level of violence towards emergency services and the damage to property and vehicles was totally unacceptable.

"Our focus now is to fully investigate the circumstances of the collision and the appalling scenes that followed.

"Arrests have already been made in connection with the disorder and more will follow. We shall be maintaining an enhanced police presence throughout the week and into the weekend."

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