UK

Police Hunt Underway After Man Shot Dead In Marriott Hotel Car Park In Waltham Abbey, Essex

08/12/2015 15:19 GMT | Updated 08/12/2015 18:59 GMT

A police hunt is underway after a man was shot dead in a Marriott Hotel car park.

The victim, thought to be in his twenties, was gunned down at the hotel on Old Shire Lane in Waltham Abbey, Essex, on Tuesday.

He was treated by paramedics but declared dead at the scene, the Press Association reported.

According to Sky News, there were reports that the victim, who has not been named, got into a passing couple's car but was shot again.

Rob Chapman, landlord of the Woodbine Inn, said he was told: "It started at the Marriott Hotel, then he got in this couple's car, got shot again and ended up in the car park of the Volunteer [a nearby pub]."

Essex Police are now scouring the area to find the killer and are working with Scotland Yard and other neighbouring forces in the hunt.

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Police outside the Marriott Hotel in Waltham Abbey

A spokesman said that armed officers had "secured" the hotel site and detectives are speaking to witnesses. The shooting is not being treated as a terrorist incident.

Chief Superintendent Luke Collison said: "Essex Police has mobilised a number of officers including armed units in response to this incident.

"At this time there is no evidence to suggest that there is any threat to the wider public or any link to terrorism.

"We will be constantly reassessing the information we receive as the investigation progresses to ensure that the safety of the public remains paramount.

"If anyone was at the hotel or in the Old Shire Lane area at the time of the shooting and has information of use to our enquiry I would urge them to contact us on 101."

Caroline Jenkins, director of sales at the hotel, said: "We are working with the police on an incident that occurred this morning."

She said that the hotel remains open and it is "business as usual".

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Police are appealing for information about the shooting

Residents in the area spoke of their shock after hearing about the shooting.

One woman, who did not want to be named, said: "I was walking back past the hotel and it must have been just after it happened because the police were shutting off the road.

"I thought someone had been run over, I never thought it would be a shooting.

"It's a bit frightening that the guy is still out there, I've double locked all my doors."

Another resident, who also did not want to be named, said: "This is a lovely town and a nice area, we never get any sort of trouble. I was so shocked when I heard what had happened, it's awful.

"They haven't caught the killer either so I'm staying locked in my house tonight."

A police cordon was in place on the road beside the Marriott Hotel and a white forensic tent had been erected in the car park.