A MAN left fighting for life following a robbery of a jeweller's at Oxford's Covered Market is one of the suspects, police have confirmed.

The Oxford Mail understands two men held up John Gowing Jewellers just after 9am.

One man, who police have confirmed was one of the two offenders, stopped breathing and paramedics carried out CPR on him as he was rushed to Oxford's John Radcliffe Hospital.

It is not yet known how the man suffered his injuries.

Det Supt Chris Ward, of Thames Valley Police, said: “Two offenders entered the shop.

“One has been injured in the robbery and has been taken to the John Radcliffe Hospital, where he remains in a serious condition.”

Police are now appealing for help to find the second robber.

South Central Ambulance spokesman James Keating-Wilkes said Thames Valley Police alerted them to an incident at John Gowing jewellers at 9.22am this morning.

He said a rapid response vehicle and an ambulance were called after a man at the Covered Market shop, aged about 40, suffered a suspected cardiac arrest.

Mr Keating-Wilkes said staff took the man to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford after finding the man “not conscious and not breathing”.

“His condition is life-threatening,” added Mr Keating-Wilkes.

A member of staff at the jeweller’s added: “All members of staff are okay – this has been a shock, absolutely.”

One of the three window panes of the jeweller's is completely smashed and a black and green motorcycle is lying near by.

A forensics officer was seen dusting the motorcycle for fingerprints.

Rowells of Oxford sales assistant Mary Faulkner said: "I was in the covered market this morning when somebody sprinted past me in a full visor and motorbike helmet near The Cake Shop.

"He was literally running so fast I had to move out the way.

"My first thought was I wonder if they've stolen something.

"Unfortunately jewellers have always been targets, especially in this economic climate.

"I wasn't aware exactly what happened at that point I just had a feeling that wasn't normal to be running at full pelt like that in a helmet.

"And I later saw police or forensics picking a pick axe or something like that out the bin in Turl Street."

Mervyn Brooker, 66 - who shops at the market almost every day - said: it's very bad, a complete shock. "This kind of thing happens a lot all over the country but for it to happen in your own town is shocking. It makes you a bit worried and think, are you safe walking around?"

Sales assistant Liz Jones at Oxford Aromatics said: "It's just a huge shock, I can't believe it. I haven't heard of anyone being hurt here before. People come here because its a nice atmosphere."

The shop and the corner of the market near the High Street entrance was cordoned off by police.

An area of Turl Street was also cordoned off and being searched by police.

Mr Ward, who is leading the investigation, said: “We are in the very early stages of our investigation but are keen to speak to anyone who might have information to help with our investigation.

“We would especially like to speak to anyone who might have seen a man who ran away from the scene, leaving the Covered Market via Turl Street.”

The man was wearing a black and white top with blue jeans and might possibly have been in the area before the robbery happening on a motorbike, with the registration ending SMV.

Mr Ward added: “I am asking anyone who has any information, no matter how insignificant they believe it to be, to get in touch.

“I would like to reassure residents that I have a team of detectives working on this investigation to ensure that we catch whoever is responsible and I urge anyone who might have been in the area of the Covered Market and seen any suspicious activity, to contact the police immediately.”

Anyone with any information about the incident should contact Oxford CID via 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

  • (copyright Newsquest Oxfordshire)