CCTV footage from a takeaway shop in Merseyside shows the frightening moment a man puts a box containing dozens of lit fireworks on the floor before shutting the door and running away, leaving trapped staff scrambling for cover amid a series of colourful explosions.
The incident took place at around 21:30pm on Monday 28 August at a branch of Hello Pizza on Stanley Road in the Kirkdale area of Liverpool. Police are investigating and hunting for the perpetrator, who was wearing blue jeans and a black hooded jumper.
Merseyside Police said in a statement that the fireworks caused damage but no injuries: "CCTV and other enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."
The CCTV footage from the incident was put up on Hello Pizza's Facebook page, as well as a mobile phone video showing the messy aftermath, with detritus from spent fireworks littering the floor, and what appear to be burn marks on the walls.
"We just want to let people know that it is not victimless crime," said a statement on Hello Pizza's Facebook page. "We [were] fortunate that nobody was harmed. We are amazed and overwhelmed by all the support we have received from the whole community. We want to thank you all."
Staff from the shop told the Liverpool Echo that they believe the firework attack could be linked to a recent shooting on the road. A shotgun case was found inside a pizza box at the shop after gunshots had been heard, and police were called.
"Those involved must have seen that as us giving them up to the police and attacked us in this way to show us that," the anonymous staff member told the local newspaper.