Coventry & Warwickshire

Warwick University student charged after blank shots fired

The scene
Image caption There were no reported injuries after blank shots were fired, police said.

A student has been charged with causing panic in a city centre after allegedly firing blank shots from a pistol.

Xinge Zhang, a 22-year-old University of Warwick student, is said to have fired the imitation firearm from the window of student halls in Coventry.

West Midlands Police said the shots were fired "numerous times" from Mercia Lodge on Tuesday.

No one was injured, however armed police were deployed to the scene in Broadgate at about 18:00 GMT.

Several businesses were evacuated in the area, which is a main thoroughfare surrounded by shops and restaurants.

Mr Zhang, from Jiangxi in China, appeared before Coventry Magistrates' Court charged with possessing an imitation firearm with the intent to cause fear of unlawful violence.

He was granted conditional bail and will next appear at Warwick Crown Court on 10 January.

Follow BBC West Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, and sign up for local news updates direct to your phone.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites