Chatham Dockside shopping centre has been closed off after a man stabbed a woman in the throat, it is understood.

Police swarmed Dockside centre, in Chatham, after receiving reports of the horrific incident on Thursday morning. 

Eyewitnesses claim to have seen a man in a white vest ‘covered in blood’ who was handcuffed and bundled into a police car after the heroic efforts of other shoppers. 

An eyewitness, Michelle Hextall, told Express.co.uk how the woman - covered in blood - was honking the horn in a desperate bid to get attention.

She said: "The woman was screaming and bibbing the horn to get attention.

"Another shopper blocked the car in so he couldn't escape."

Shaken by the incident, she added: "Attacker was then put into police van. Didn't appear to resist arrest.

"The attacker is leaning on the bonnet of police car in front. 

“His hands were covered in blood up to his elbows. Blood on t-shirt.”

Another witness, Ash Tucker, posted on Facebook: "Just pulling into Dockside Chatham, 10 police cars race past with flashing lights, as I've locked the door I hear shouting and commotion.

"The next bay opposite to me there's a man covered in blood being restrained by officers.

"He's cut a lady's throat as she sits in her car and he doesn't even look phased."

The local MP, Kelly Tolhurst, said she was ’shocked’ by the incident. 

The MP for Rochester and Strood tweeted: “Shocked & devastated by the horrific incident at Dockside - police in attendance and investigating.”

It is thought the attacker locked the victim in car, close to the Odeon cinema. 

The cinema is reportedly laying on refreshments for people who are unable to leave the area as their cars are inside the police cordon. 

Anthony Sutton, manager of Dockside Outlet Centre, said: "The man is in custody and we are liaising with and assisting the police to minimise disruption."

A police spokesman said: “Kent Police is currently attending the dockside area, Maritime Way in Chatham following a report of a serious assault.

“Officers were called at 11.03am on Thursday 29 June 2017 following reports a woman had been injured.

“A man has been arrested at the scene in connection with the incident.

“Officers do not believe there to be any further threat to the public.

“Officers remain at the scene carrying out enquiries.”

The area has been cordoned off and there are reports of at least 10 police cars at the scene. 

The Air Ambulance was also spotted circling overhead, looking for somewhere to land.

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