A WOMAN and four men have been arrested after armed police responded to reports of shots being fired at different properties in Stockton and Thornaby on Monday night.

But police have moved to reassure residents that those involved are believed to be known to each other and say there is 'no wider risk' to the public.

The incidents happened on Tarring Street, in Stockton, and Victor Way, in Thornaby. There have been no reported injuries as a result.

A woman aged 58 and four men - aged 22, 30, 37 and 55 - have been arrested today as police continue to investigate.

Cleveland Police said residents would notice continued activity today with addresses being searched, armed police in attendance and cordons in place in affected areas.

Chief Superintendent Ciaron Irvine said: “I appreciate people will be concerned after hearing of the incidents reported to have taken place last night and by seeing large numbers of police - some armed - in their neighbourhoods.

“I would reassure residents that their safety is paramount and I have arranged extra patrols in the areas affected.

“We will not tolerate activity like that reported last night and we will use all available resources, tactics and expertise from teams across the force to identify and arrest all those involved.

“I would urge anyone with information which could help our inquiries to contact Cleveland Police on the 101 number.

“If people do not want to speak to police, they could pass information anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers’ website at www.crimestoppers-uk.org or by phoning them on 0800 555 111.”