A man stabbed a Marks & Spencer worker and a shopper hours after UK reopened non-essential stores.
A local man, 57, was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder following the attack in Burnley, Lancashire Police said.
The two women, a Marks & Spencer employee in her 40s and a shopper in her 60s, were rushed to hospital with serious but ‘not life threatening’ knife injuries.
Officers today confirmed the attack is ‘not being treated as a terrorism incident.’
The stabbing came as shoppers flocked back to the High Street after the national coronavirus lockdown was lifted and all shops reopened on ‘Wild Wednesday.’
Footage from the scene captured a man in a face mask being detained by officers outside the Marks & Spencer store this morning.
Witnesses claimed one of the women was stabbed in the neck during the attack, but this has not yet been confirmed.
Lancashire Police said a knife was recovered from the scene following what is believed to be an ‘isolated incident.’
One man on social media claimed to be a relative of the alleged attacker, and said the suspect has struggled with mental health issues for at least 10 years.
He added ‘[the suspect] may have relapsed or stopped taking his medication’, while others claimed the man had been ‘ignored and neglected’ by authorities ‘for a long time.’
It comes as eager Christmas shoppers in England were able to hit the High Street for the first time in four weeks as the national lockdown restrictions were lifted.
Today is being branded ‘Wild Wednesday’ because shops can stay open all night to claw back some of £900million-a-day economic hit caused by the Prime Minister’s controversial tier system.
In Burnley, which is under the tightest Tier 3 rules, the town centre was busy with shoppers looking to visit non-essential shops for the first since since November 5.
However, Marks & Spencer had remained open as an essential business throughout England’s second Covid-19 lockdown.
A spokeswoman for the retailer said: ‘We are incredibly grateful for the emergency services that responded to this incident and the two people who were injured are now in good care.
‘We are also supporting the police with their investigation.
‘The store is currently closed and our focus is on ensuring that our colleagues in Burnley receive all the support they need.’