A POLICE chase turned to horror after a man on the run plunged at least 20ft through a roof.
Witnesses said at least seven officers were chasing the man and had threatened to set a police dog on him.
The man climbed on to a garage roof and – despite warnings of the danger – fell through a plastic skylight on to cars and machinery below.
The victim suffered serious injuries to his head and body and is in a serious condition in hospital.
The drama unfolded after an incident in a bar in the Gorgie area of Edinburgh yesterday evening.
Rumours in the area, next to Hearts’ Tynescastle ground, are that there was a violent incident between fans of the two teams following yesterday’s derby match which ended in a draw.
A witness, who saw what happened from his home in nearby Newton Street, said he heard shouting at about 9.30pm.
The man, who did not want to be named, said the next he knew a man had climbed on to the roof of Tynecastle Garage.
He said: “At first I couldn’t see him, then he appeared on the roof.”
“There was seven to eight police chasing the guy.
“The guy was fast, he could definitely run.
“The police shouted, ‘The police dog is coming’ so the guy scrambled on the Tynecastle roof.”
He added: “It’s a fibreglass roof, so the guy was obviously going to fall through.
“I saw him fall.”
The onlooker said the police officers were in a garden next to the garage as the man scaled the roof, and were not aware the man was about to fall.
He continued: “There’s steel beams, lots of cars and I think there’s machinery inside.
“Some other neighbours warned him he was going to fall.”
Another neighbour from Newton Street said: “I had to shout to a police man to not get on the roof.
“He was trying to follow the guy that fell through and obviously didn’t see the fibre glass bit.
“If I didn’t shout the police man would’ve gone straight down too.”
The neighbour said the man who fell was around six feet tall.
Today a large hole was obviously visible in the strip of clear plastic that runs the length of the garage roof.
A shopkeeper said: “There were four Hibs supporters singing outside that pub last night around half 5 or 6.
“Just looking for trouble.”
A local resident said: “I heard a lot of banging and there were heaps of police cars everywhere. I heard noise from the garage, the wooden door being opened and people walking about.
“There were police all night, police dog vans, ambulances and men in white suits.”
A Lothian and Borders Police spokesman said: “Police were called to a report of an altercation at a licensed premise on Gorgie Road around 9.30pm last night (Sunday, August 12).
“When officers attended, they were made aware that a man who was suspected of being involved in the incident was making off from police.
“Officers pursued him through a number of streets and gardens and requested he stop several times however he failed to do so.
“He made his way onto the roof of a garage on Gorgie Road, which he fell through.
“Officers assisted ambulance crews in reaching the man and he was conveyed to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, where he remains in a serious condition.”
The police spokesman continued: “The use of Police Dogs is a standard tactic for officers trying to trace a suspect when they are lost to sight, especially during night time and when we believe they are concealing themselves.
“Enquiries are ongoing in relation to this incident, and a number of operational statements have been taken in order to establish the full circumstances.
“These enquiries are ongoing and we cannot comment on the content of these statements at this time.”