Reason for Cardiff riots uncovered as two teenagers ‘die in serious crash’

Cardiff: Rioters hurl missiles at police in ‘large scale disorder’

Riots broke out in Cardiff following the death of two teenagers in a crash. The Police and Crime Commissioner for South Wales has said that rumours ciruclated online about the crash being the result of a police chase. Officers were called to the collision were tempers boiled over, in Snowden Road, Ely, at about 6pm on Monday.

The police were confronted with “large-scale disorder”, with a minimum of two cars torched as the violence involving scores of youths raged for at least nine hours.

Alun Michael, South Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “My understanding is that there was a road traffic accident involving two teenagers on an off-road bike or scooter and sadly they died.

“That’s an incident obviously that is being investigated in its own right.”

He added: “And that appears to have sparked, for reasons that aren’t clear, the disorder that you’ve referred to in which something like a dozen officers were injured, fortunately none of them life threatening, and the connection between the two is far from clear.

“So obviously there’s going to be investigations going on this morning to try and establish what happened.”

He continued: “It would appear that there were rumours, and those rumours became rife, of a police chase, which wasn’t the case.

“And I think it illustrates the speed with which rumours can run around with the activity that goes on on social media nowadays, and that events can get out of hand.”

Mr Michael said those responsible will be “brought to account” for the violence.

He added: “Obviously very frightening for local people. And there were a lot of calls to the police expressing concern about what was going on.

“Ely is an area which has a lot of deprivation, but it’s also a very warm community.

“I think what we have is an incident that involved some people and a proper investigation is needed to establish exactly what happened.”

Rioters took to the streets at around 6pm in Ely, Cardiff, and were still causing carnage nine hours later.

Officers were called to Snowdon Road and during the violent evening cars were set alight and missiles, including concrete blocks and fireworks, were thrown at the police.

Police remain on Snowdon Road, meanwhile a disabled woman has said she is “trapped” after rioters set her car on Highmead Road ablaze during the disorder.

A YouTube livestream showed people throwing projectiles at a line of police officers with riot shields who were blocking one end of the street. Rubbish bins were also set alight by the rioters.

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