Haywards Heath man searched in police hunt for ‘gunman’

Reports of a ‘gunman’ being seen in Haywards Heath have caused concern, with a man being stopped and searched by police.

Matthew Saward told the Middy that on Monday night he was stopped in Sussex Road by officers ‘in hunt for the gunman’.

Sussex Road in Haywards Heath. Picture: Google Street View

Sussex Road in Haywards Heath. Picture: Google Street View

Mr Saward, 39, who lives in Haywards Heath, said he was on the way home from work at about 11.30pm when it happened.

“I was being followed by a police car through the town,” he said.

“I thought it was a bit weird for them to be following me.

“They stopped and searched me on Sussex Road. There was about two or three police cars and an undercover police car. They were looking for a man with a gun.

“They told me to put my hands on the back of the car and then they handcuffed me and told me to stay calm.

“They searched my rucksack and told me they were doing a stop and search and then they let me go. I was so shaken up by it. There wasn’t anyone around. I was just going home from work.”

Mr Saward, who works at Sainsbury’s, said he has been left in ‘complete shock’ following the incident.

“I felt scared when they stopped and searched me, because I hadn’t done anything wrong,” he said.

“It was a complete shock. I kept saying to them I’ve done nothing wrong and why are you doing this – I told them I was a Christian.”

The 39-year-old said he could not sleep after the incident, which has left him feeling ‘let down’.

He added: “I thought that what is this world coming too.”

A spokesman for Sussex Police said: “We received a report of a man with a suspected firearm in Park Road, Haywards Heath, at about 10.35pm on Monday (February 18).

“An area search was carried out, but there was no trace. A man matching the description provided was stopped and searched, but all was in order. No offences committed and no further action.”

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