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A 19-year-old man who was arrested at Windsor Castle allegedly armed with a crossbow was sectioned off under the Mental Health Act.
It comes as the police increased security at the queen’s residence after the apparent robbery attempt on Christmas Day.
The man, from Southampton, was arrested on suspicion of trespassing or trespassing on a protected site and possession of an offensive weapon, police said.
Officers decided to section him under the Mental Health Act after an evaluation and he remains under the care of medical professionals.
Armed officers stood guard and a surveillance vehicle was seen on the castle grounds this morning as police increased security for the Royal Family after yesterday’s scare.
Sources suggested the man was armed with a crossbow and used a rope ladder to scale a metal fence, but police refused to release exactly what he was carrying.
It is understood that he was seen on CCTV wandering the grounds around 8:30 a.m. after scaling an outside wall and then triggered an alarm. Armed response teams were on the scene within minutes.
It is unclear if the intruder approached the Queen’s private apartments. Police confirmed that he did not enter any buildings and quickly dismissed any terrorist motives.
Charles, Edward, and their wives were later photographed while on their way to a service
Last night, a 19-year-old Southampton man was detained on suspicion of “trespassing or trespassing on a protected site” and possession of an offensive weapon.
Crossbows are often called ‘lethal but legal’ because they do not require a license or registration and can be purchased online.
An hour after the security scare, the Queen, who is celebrating Christmas in Windsor instead of Sandringham due to Covid fears, welcomed Prince Charles and Camilla to the castle.
Prince Edward and Sophie arrived shortly after with their children, Lady Louise, 18, and Viscount Severn, 14.
Charles, Edward, and their wives were later photographed while on their way to a service at St George’s Chapel on the castle grounds.
The Queen missed the service in what is understood as a personal choice. Then all the Royals had lunch together.
Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Barber said
The theft came as the 95-year-old monarch reflected on a year of personal grief in a deeply personal Christmas message, her first since the death of Prince Philip.
She said that her ‘mischievous and inquisitive glow was just as bright in the end as when I first saw it.’
A Palace source said: “Fortunately, the intruder was apprehended and police were on the scene almost immediately, but there is a chill in the air for what it could have been.”
A source said: “The security controllers monitoring the CCTV could not believe their eyes when they saw the man carrying what appeared to be a crossbow, and they rushed the armed police.”
Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Barber said: ‘This individual was arrested at the earliest opportunity and had not entered any building.
“I have spoken with the chief of police and we want guarantees about safety.”
The man was taken to Maidenhead Police Station. He is believed to be at least the third major security breach in Windsor in the last year.
Five intruders arrived on the royal grounds with two infractions days apart, in April.
In one, a woman was allowed into Prince Andrew’s Royal Lodge after claiming that she was her fiancée and that they had a lunch date.
Last week, a woman was arrested after slamming on Prince Andrew’s car window and yelling at him as she drove from the Royal Lodge to the castle.
Quick and Facts
- Armed intruder was arrested in the grounds of Windsor Castle on Christmas Day
- The 19-year-old, from Southampton, was sectioned under the Mental Health Act
- He was allegedly carrying an offensive weapon, later described as a ‘crossbow’
- The man did not manage to enter any buildings during the incident, police added
- Security were alerted to his presence when alarm was triggered around 8:30am