• Masked youths clash with police and smash shops in Hackney
• Reports of disturbances in Lewisham, Peckham and Clapham
• Boris Johnson cuts short holiday to return to London
• Police step up patrols tonight as officers abandon leave
• Twitter users could face arrest for incitement, Yard warns
Violence erupted in broad daylight this afternoon as rioters surrounded police vans, looted lorries and attacked shops in boroughs all across London.
Police tried to protect themselves in Hackney as a mob of hooded youths began hurling missiles at them. Shops, offices and businesses all over the city were told to close early as the police feared the most violent confrontations yet.
Messages continued being broadcasted over Blackberry Messenger and Twitter rallying calls for further looting and clashes with police.
Blackberry UK have released a fuller statement, indicating they will aid the police in tracking individuals who are thought to be using Blackberry Messenger (BBM) to co-ordinate the disorder. Twitter are also reportedly helping the Met with their investigation by making them aware of any plans to riot.
Lewisham hall was shut down, shops in Palmers Green closed early, a police helicopter was seen hovering low over Hackney as a thin line of police faced a growing crowd in Mare Street.
There were also reports from Lewisham of really serious disorder. Apparently an electrical goods shop has been looted and a jewellers attacked. Youths are apparently now constructing barricades outside the main fire station in Lewisham.
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