Monday, August 29, 2016

Wikipedia article of the day for August 30, 2016

The Wikipedia article of the day for August 30, 2016 is Siege of Sidney Street.
The Siege of Sidney Street of January 1911 was a gunfight in the East End of London. During an attempted jewellery robbery at Houndsditch by a gang of immigrant Latvians, their leader George Gardstein was mortally wounded. Two weeks later, the last two unapprehended suspects were tracked down at 100 Sidney Street in Stepney. Local residents were evacuated, and a gunfight broke out with the police. After a six-hour siege, a fire consumed the building, and the bodies of the two suspects were found within. One of the firemen, Superintendent Charles Pearson, was killed when the building collapsed. The siege marked the first time the police had requested army assistance in London to deal with an armed stand-off. It was also the first siege in Britain to be filmed, by Pathé News. Winston Churchill, the Home Secretary, who was present at the siege, said that he gave no instructions to the police, but a Metropolitan police history of the event contradicted this. One of those arrested for the robbery had his conviction overturned on appeal; the rest were acquitted. The events were fictionalised in novels and in the films The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) and The Siege of Sidney Street (1960).

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