Christmas crossbow intruder suspect at Windsor Castle detained under Mental Health Act

The incident is believed to be at least the third major security breach at Windsor in the last year, with a palace source stating there will now be a ‘major evaluation’ of security procedures and protocols

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Windsor Castle intruder: Security expert reacts to Christmas breach

A man has been detained under the Mental Health Act after an intruder allegedly broke into the grounds of Windsor Castle on Christmas Day.

The man, 19, has been detained after Thames Valley Police and the Metropolitan Police responded to a security breach at the Queen’s home.

He was taken into custody on suspicion of breach or trespass of a protected site and possession of an offensive weapon – and has undergone a mental health assessment.

Following that, he was sectioned under the Mental Health Act and remains in the care of medical professionals.

After police searched the man, a crossbow was recovered.

The suspect was stopped by the police outside the castle around 8.30am on December 25 as the Queen marked her first Christmas without her late husband Prince Philip.

At the time, Her Majesty was in her personal quarters about to greet her son Prince Charles and daughter-in-law Camilla.

The family were later joined by Prince Edward, his wife Sophie and their children, Louise and James, for the festivities.

The incident is believed to be at least the third major security breach at Windsor in the last year


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The intruder was detained under the Mental Health Act after an alleged attempted break-in


Maureen McLean/REX/Shutterstock)

The suspect was stopped “within moments of him entering the grounds” and did not make it inside any buildings, Thames Valley Police said.

The incident is believed to be at least the third major security breach at Windsor in the last year.

A palace source said: “It is obviously a worry to have to deal with a break in like this, especially after Her Majesty has been through so much this year and in the lead up to Christmas.

“There will have to be a major evaluation of the security procedures and protocols after this event.

“Fortunately the intruder was apprehended and police were on the scene almost immediately but there is a chill in the air over what could have been.”

This is the first Christmas the Queen has marked without Prince Philip


Tim Graham/Getty Images)

The Queen typically spends the Christmas period in Sandringham, Norfolk, but cancelled her visit this year amid rising levels of the Omicron Covid variant.

Instead, she stayed in Windsor with a few members of the Royal Family.

Princess Anne’s husband, Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence, tested positive for Covid earlier this week, meaning the couple were not able to join the monarch.

They are thought to be isolating together at their country estate, Gatcombe Park, in Gloucestershire.

Prince Andrew spent Christmas Day with his daughters Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice, along with their husbands Jack Brooksbank and Edo Mapelli Mozzi, and children August, 10 months, and Sienna, three months.

Police apprehended the suspect before he entered any buildings


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Prince William and Kate celebrated the festivities with their three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, at their home in Norfolk.

While the Duke and Duchess of Sussex chose to remain in their LA home with six-month-old Lilibet and Archie, two.

Millions tuned in at 3pm on Christmas Day to watch the Queen’s speech, which began with footage from her Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1997.

The monarch told Brits how she missed the Duke of Edinburgh’s “familiar laugh” after he died in April this year at the age of 99.

The teen, 19, was arrested at Windsor Castle on Christmas Day


POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

The funeral of Prince Philip, 99, who died in April


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She went on to reveal her heartbreak at the loss of her beloved husband of 73 years, and reminisced that his “mischievous, enquiring twinkle was as bright at the end as when I first set eyes on him”.

She continued: “Although it’s a time of great happiness and good cheer for many Christmas can be hard for those who have lost loved ones. This year, especially, I understand why.”

The Queen also remarked on how her darkest days were emboldened by the numerous tributes to Philip that flowed in from around the world following his passing.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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