Sikh youth arrested
at Windsor Castle
with a crossbow

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LONDON: Officers from Thames Valley Police and the Metropolitan Police responded to a security breach at around 08:30hrs on Saturday (25 December) within the grounds of Windsor Castle.
A 19-year-old man from Southampton was arrested on suspicion of breach or trespass of a protected site and possession of an offensive weapon.
Security processes were triggered within moments of the man entering the grounds and he did not enter any buildings. Following a search of the man, a crossbow was recovered.
The man was taken into custody and has undergone a mental health assessment – he has since been sectioned under the Mental Health Act and remains in the care of medical professionals.
Enquiries into the full circumstances of this incident are being progressed by Metropolitan Police Specialist Operations.

Windsor Castle crossbow suspect Jaswant Singh Chail (picture courtesy Newsbreak)

Earlier, it was reported that the UK police probe video after a Sikh held at Queen’s castle Police said on Monday they were assessing a video purportedly made by a man who tried to break into a castle where Queen Elizabeth II was spending Christmas in which he said he wanted to kill her.

In the video, obtained by The Sun tabloid, a masked figure in a dark hoodie holding a crossbow claims he will “attempt to assassinate Elizabeth, Queen of the Royal Family”.

The figure addresses the camera with a distorted voice and identifies himself as an Indian Sikh intent on “revenge” for an infamous 1919 massacre of Sikhs in British-ruled India.

The video was shared on the social media platform Snapchat, around 24 minutes before a suspect was detained early on Christmas Day by armed police within the grounds of Windsor Castle, west of London.

The 19-year-old arrested is being held for mental health treatment, after officers recovered a crossbow during the brief security breach, according to London’s Metropolitan police.

It has said security processes were triggered “within moments” of the man entering the castle grounds at around 0830 GMT Saturday and that he did not enter any buildings.

The incident occurred as the Queen spent a low-key Christmas Day there with her eldest son and heir to the throne Prince Charles and his wife Camilla.

In the video, the masked figure said he was seeking revenge for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, as it is known in India.

In April 1919, British troops fired on thousands of unarmed men, women and children in the northern city of Amritsar.

The number of casualties from the event, which galvanised support for independence, is unclear. Colonial-era records put the death toll at 379, but Indian figures put the number closer to 1,000. “It is also revenge for those who have been killed, humiliated and discriminated on because of their race,” the figure added in the video.

He also makes several references to Star Wars during the brief address, while also predicting his own “death is near”.

Home Secretary Priti Patel

Home Secretary Priti Patel

Meanwhile, Home Secretary Priti Patel has ordered a review of the current rules surrounding crossbow ownership. A Home Office spokesperson said in a statement the department has been instructed to look at possible ways to “strengthen controls” on the weapons.

“Crossbows are subject to controls and legislation is in place to deal with those who use them as a weapon,” the spokesperson said.

“At the Home Secretary’s request, we are considering options to strengthen controls on crossbows. Work on this has been ongoing throughout the year, and we keep all relevant laws under review to maintain public safety.”

It comes after a 19-year-old man was arrested at Windsor Castle on Christmas Day while allegedly in possession of a crossbow.

Metropolitan Police said the man had been sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Under current legislation, it is an offence for anyone under 18 to purchase or possess a crossbow and for anyone to sell a crossbow to someone aged under 18.