Skip to content
Home ยป 24 Hours In Police Custody: Bedford Takeaway Siege Recounted

24 Hours In Police Custody: Bedford Takeaway Siege Recounted

Image source, Channel 4

Image caption, Nathan Turner and Paul Burton threatened neighbours and police during an armed siege

By Louise Parry

BBC News, Bedfordshire

The dramatic developments of a 14-hour armed siege sparked by a cold kebab is recounted in a television programme.

24 Hours in Police Custody features the tense stand-off at a tower block in Bedford in November 2022.

Paul Burton, 45, and Nathan Turner, 37, were jailed after they threatened neighbours with a high-powered air rifle and Burton fired at a police car.

Supt Steve Ashdown of Bedfordshire Police said: “Thankfully we achieved a peaceful outcome.”

“I’ve been a firearms commander for 10 years and this is the first siege of this type that I’ve dealt with,” he said.

He recalled the weapon used by Burton was very powerful and praised firearms officers and negotiating teams who “trained for scenarios like this on a regular basis”.

Burton and Turner, who were drunk and high on drugs, initially kept a delivery driver prisoner in a lift for two hours after claiming their takeaway was late and cold.

They had ordered food at about 03:00 on 27 November last year but when the driver arrived on the eighth floor of the flats they placed a coffee table across the lift door to trap him inside.

The takeaway’s owner later drove to the scene after receiving abusive calls from Turner and pleas for help from his distressed employee.

On his arrival, his car roof was damaged by an item thrown from above.

Image source, Bedfordshire Police

Image caption, Paul Burton (left) was jailed for seven years and Nathan Turner was sentenced to 20 months

The duo then began to threaten neighbours and police with the weapon.

Burton vowed he would “shoot the first officer that walks through the door” before shooting at the windscreen of a manned police car.

The siege continued throughout the day with Turner throwing paint and plants from a balcony, damaging several vehicles below.

He eventually gave himself up at 12:34 and Burton finally relented at 17:49 – 14 hours after the stand-off began.

Image source, Bedfordshire Police

Image caption, Paint was thrown into the car park below the flat

Burton was jailed for seven years after pleading guilty to attempting to cause grievous bodily harm and possessing a firearm without a certificate.

Turner was sentenced to 20 months after admitting affray and criminal damage.

Sentencing them at Luton Crown Court in October, Judge David Farrell KC said: “It was an appalling and terrifying incident.

“This was an extremely disturbing and frightening siege in which a firearm was present.”

Supt Ashdown said after a decade of working with the Channel 4 TV programme, “you become familiar with the camera teams and it becomes second nature to walk past and ignore them”.

“It’s very easy to look at the headlines and judge police and other emergency service on the outcomes but if you see the effort that goes into the investigations – and the actual siege in this case – you can see the added complexities that the public don’t normally witness,” he added.

Image source, Channel 4

Image caption, The siege in Bedford features on the new series of 24 Hours in Police Custody

Follow East of England news on Facebook, Instagram and X. Got a story? Email [email protected] or WhatsApp 0800 169 1830

Related Internet Links

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