Police arrested 39 people on suspicion of attempted murder after a man was stabbed at a party.
The victim, believed to be in his thirties, was left fighting for his life after suffering multiple stab wounds.
Two police officers were stood outside a mini supermarket and a local shop opposite the scene in Hammermsith, west London, that remains cordoned off.
A tattoo parlour, a pub and a Sainsbury’s supermarket are all within the cordon
Sainsbury’s staff remain inside the store and the area remains a crime scene.
Forensics arrived at the scene where two knives were found nearby.
Police say the victim was chased by a group of men and women following a row in a shop.
Paramedics and police were called to the scene shortly before 1am this morning (MON), and an air ambulance was also dispatched.
Police, including Territorial Support Group officers, arrested 39 people at a nearby party after the gang were seen entering the residential street.
They remain in custody in several police stations on suspicion of attempted murder.
Detectives investigating the stabbing said the unusually large number of arrests was due to ‘a lack of cooperation.’
They said the white man was chased across the road by a gang of black ‘school kids’ following an argument at a newsagents.
The teenagers shouted ‘Get him! Get him!’ as a member of their group challenged the victim with a knife while a girl pleaded for him to stop, according to witnesses.
They said blood squirted from the victim’s chest when he was knifed just before 1am Monday outside a Sainsbury’s store in Hammersmith, west London.
An eye witness, who lives on the same street as where the man was stabbed, said: “I was crying – I thought ‘what if that was my boyfriend or brother?’
“I heard a lot of commotion, like kids entertaining themselves in the street.
“I had a feeling something wasn’t right, and then the kids kept running backwards and forwards screaming ‘Get him! Get him!’
“Then I saw a knife there – it was shining – and somebody was going to get hurt.
“The person that did the stabbing – I heard him say ‘Come on then!’
“I could hear others saying ‘Leave them! Leave them!’ and ‘F*ck him!’ and a girl’s voice say ‘No, don’t!’
“Whoever that girl was, was probably the only one with sense.
“That man, whoever he was, was on his own, maybe waiting for a bus.
“They stabbed him next to his heart so the intention is to kill him. I don’t know how somebody can put a knife into another person.”
She said the group, believed to be aged 16 to 20, ran into a nearby house where a party was said to be taking place.
Residents told how they heard music coming from the address and saw a person look out the window as the group ran through the brown door and upstairs to the flat.
The woman added: “When I arrived home, I heard music and it sounded like people were having fun.
“I saw them running into the house and anybody in that house has a part to play in what happened; you are guilty by association.”
The resident dialled 999 to report the altercation minutes before the victim was stabbed.
Supt Mark Lawrence said: “What appears to have been a minor argument has resulted in a man sustaining life-threatening injuries.
“Whilst it is unusual for so many people to be arrested in the early stages of an investigation such as this, due to a lack of co-operation and the necessity of securing essential evidence following a serious assault, this action was appropriate.”
Officers and paramedics treated the victim at the scene and he was rushed to hospital where he is in a critical condition.
Supt Lawrence added: “Officers were quickly on the scene and provided him with first aid prior to the arrival of our colleagues in the LAS.
“He has been taken to hospital where he continues to receive treatment for his injuries.”
A London Ambulance Service (LAS) spokesman said: “We were called at 1am to Fulham Palace Road, Hammersmith to reports of an incident.
“We sent an incident response officer, a single responder in a car and an ambulance crew to the scene.
“We also dispatched London’s Air Ambulance.
“We treated a man at the scene and took him to a major trauma centre as a priority by road.”