Three people have died after a series of linked incidents that forced a hospital to be locked down in Kilmarnock.
Two women, aged 39 and 24, and a 40-year-old man died on Thursday night, police said.
Crosshouse Hospital was locked down after the 39-year-old woman was found injured after being attacked at 7.45pm in the car park, where she died despite medical treatment.
The 24-year-old woman was stabbed 20 minutes later in the town’s Portland Street and died after being taken to the hospital.
The man then died at the scene of a car crash on the C50, a road between the B7036 and the A76.
Police said they were not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths and that an investigation was underway into the full circumstances.
Chief superintendent Faroque Hussain said: “A number of locations remain cordoned off as officers continue to conduct enquiries.
“We are working to confirm the full circumstances of what has happened. If anyone has any information which could assist our enquiries, please do contact us.
“Understandably, people will be shocked by what has happened. We are still in the process of establishing the full circumstances, however, I would like to reassure people that there is no wider threat to the community.
“Officers will be on patrol and anyone with any concerns can approach these officers.”
The hospital was locked down for around three hours following the first incident, reopening at 10.30pm.
On Friday, NHS Ayrshire and Arran chief executive John Burns said: “The terrible events of Thursday on the grounds of University Hospital Crosshouse and in the town of Kilmarnock will no doubt have had a massive impact on all those involved.
“Our thoughts and condolences are with all those involved.
“We have increased the staff care support available to our staff and we are encouraging any members of our staff who have been affected to take advantage of the support available – whether that is by calling our helplines and speaking to a member of the staff care team, or attending the staff wellbeing hub.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the professionalism of the staff who were involved in the incident. This was a particularly challenging incident and our staff reacted with care and compassion.
“In terms of the incident, we are assisting Police Scotland with their investigations. As this is an ongoing investigation, we are unable to provide any further information at this time.
“Visitors to the hospital should note that the car park at the physiotherapy department will remain closed until Police Scotland have concluded their investigations.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said her thoughts were with everyone involved in the incidents.
She tweeted: “Dreadful news. My thoughts are with the bereaved. Thinking too of everyone at Crosshouse Hospital, already dealing with the tough circumstances of Covid.
“I’m also grateful to our emergency services.”
Road diversions are in place as a number of areas remain cordoned off in the town centre and on the road between the B7036 and A76.
An East Ayrshire Council statement said: “Following on from the tragic incidents in and around Kilmarnock last night, our thoughts are with all the families and individuals affected by these events.
“We know our communities will be shocked and saddened by these events, but we wish to reassure them that there is no risk to the general public at this time and we are supporting our colleagues in NHS Ayrshire & Arran and Police Scotland wherever we can.
“As this is an ongoing police matter, we need to keep a number of roads in Kilmarnock town centre closed and diversions are in place here, and on the A76, to allow the investigation to continue, and we thank you for your patience and understanding.”
Anyone with information can contact police on 101.
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