to Regain Control of London
The Daily Mail (UK)
Police today admitted they were prepared to use plastic bullets against rioters if a fourth night of lawlessness sees gangs of youths marauding across London and looting businesses.
With an 'unprecedented' 16,000 police officers due on the streets of London tonight, answers were today being demanded over the failure of police to bring last night's riots under control.
Just hours after David Cameron warned rioters they would face the 'full force of the law' there were rumours on Twitter that violence was already starting up again in isolated areas across the capital.
Asked if plastic bullets could be used, Assistant Commissioner Steve Kavanagh said: "That's a tactic that will be used by the Metropolitan Police if deemed necessary." He added that was "not going to throw 180 years of policing with the community away" as the prospect of using the non-lethal ammunition for the first time at a British disturbance was raised.
The army of police officers on-duty in London will swell to 16,000 tonight - compared with just 6,000 last night - as reinforcements are drafted in from 26 forces across the country.
Mr. Kavanagh said he was sorry "that London has got to wake up to these scenes...We need to do better for London because those images last night were shocking for everyone."
Every police cell in the capital was full today, forcing officers to transport suspects outside the city.
The riots claimed their first life as a 26-year-old man who was shot as he sat in a car during rioting in Croydon died in hospital.
Huge swathes of the capital woke up to the charred debris of burned out buildings and streets littered with waste. David Cameron has recalled Parliament for the day on Thursday as he pledged to bring the situation under control.
After cutting short his Tuscany holiday to deal with the worsening public disorder crisis, the Prime Minister said today: "We will do everything necessary to restore order to Britain's streets and to make them safe for the law-abiding."
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