JANUARY 2011 - REVIEW
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(includes full list of incidents)
Full List of Incidents
- During January two sets of figures for gun crime in England and Wales were
published. Both indicated that gun crime is continuing to fall. The more
detailed figures reveal an annual drop of 9% in the number of offences for
all firearms (including air weapons) to 12,995 recorded crimes during the
year to March 2010. The other data show a fall of 6% for gun crime not
involving air weapons for the year ending September 2010. Within the
detailed data there were some increases, including for offences resulting in
injury (up 5%) and offences involving imitation weapons (up
1%), but both these categories had shown large falls in the previous year
and were still down significantly from 2007/08. There was a welcome fall of
12% in offences involving handguns, although it remains likely the
data include many that will have involved imitation weapons, something which
is suggested by the frequency with which weapons used in armed robberies,
described at the time of the incident as handguns, are later identified as
imitations. GCN notes that the recorded use of shotguns decreased,
although there is anecdotal evidence from media reports to suggest that
these are increasingly being used in the most serious gun crime. The
figures reveal that when shotguns were used in crime they were four-times
more likely to be fired than handguns.
The number of offences involving air weapons fell by a further 19
percent in 2009/10 and has more than halved since 2005/06, though airguns
were still involved in nearly five thousand offences which comprised 38% of
the total number. The fall in airgun offences is greater than suggested by
the number of media reports seen by GCN, and some of the incidents, such as
the frequent attacks on pets and wildlife, are probably not being included
in the gun crime statistics. In February a new law on
Airgun Safety comes into force and
it is hoped that this measure will lead to a further reduction in the misuse
of air weapons. Nevertheless, GCN continues to believe that unless airguns
are treated like any other firearm and are subject to a process of
registration they will continue to be widely misused and make an
unacceptable contribution to gun crime. It is worth recording, however,
that at least during January 2011 there were fewer reports of incidents
involving air weapons, with only one in which a victim was hit (see below).
Deaths and Injuries
shooting incidents in January which resulted in fatalities.
of these were apparent homicides:
Merseyside (2) - a man died six days after being shot in Anfield (three
people were arrested), and a second victim was fatally shot in
Fazakerley (an 18-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of murder)
Yorkshire (1) - a woman was found dead at a house in Woodlesford (Leeds)
with wounds apparently from a shotgun (a man has been charged with
apparent suicides were also reported this month. A man shot and killed
himself with a sawn-off shotgun after a 16-hour siege in a park in Luton
(Bedfordshire) and a man was found dead on a canal boat in Alvechurch
(Worcestershire) with a shotgun lying by his side.
victims were shot, just
with an airgun or imitation gun.
Bedfordshire (1) - a man sustained serious injuries after being shot in
(1) - a 15-year-old boy was shot twice in the head with an airgun in
Manchester (2) - a teenage boy and a man both suffered shotgun wounds in
Bury (one man was arrested on suspicion of possessing a firearm)
(1) - a teenager was shot with a revolver in Dover (another teenager has
been charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent and
attempting to pervert the course of justice)
(9) - three people were reported to have been shot in Croydon (four
teenagers were arrested on suspicion of attempted murder), a man was
seriously injured when he was shot in Hackney, four teenagers were
reported to have been hit when a gunman on a moped opened fire in
Stockwell (two teenagers have been arrested) and a 14-year-old was shot
during attacks in East Dulwich in which another teenager was fatally
Merseyside (1) - a man was shot in the abdomen and hip outside a
takeaway in Wavertree
Nottinghamshire (1) - a man was shot, apparently at a house in Beeston
(six people have been arrested over the shooting)
Tyneside (1) - a man was shot as he walked through the front door of his
house in Dumpling Hall (two 17-year-olds were helping police with their
Yorkshire (1) - a man was shot in the leg with a shotgun during a
confrontation in a street in Manningham (Bradford) (three men, probably
including the victim, were arrested)
also reported that a man had been shot in a street in Hook (south west
London) in December 2010.
Hold-Ups and Assaults
were robberies and attempted robberies allegedly involving guns at
(5) in Hove (East Sussex), Watlington (Oxfordshire) (sawn-off shotgun; a
man has been charged with a number of offences relating to this and
earlier robberies), Langley (Berkshire), and Burgess Hill (West Sussex)
(at two separate premises; the raids are believed to be linked),
Bookmaker's (6) in Palfrey (West Midlands) (handgun), Manchester
(handgun), Rushden (Northamptonshire) (handgun), Glasgow (two separate
incidents), and Hamilton (South Lanarkshire), Petrol Stations (6)
in March (Cambridgeshire) (handgun), Vauxhall (Liverpool) (BB gun; a
17-year-old was arrested), High Wycombe (Buckinghamshire), Aylesbury
(Buckinghamshire) (handgun), Ellesmere Port (Cheshire) (BB gun; a man has
been charged), and Longwick (Buckinghamshire) (handguns),
(2) in Linwood (Renfrewshire) (handgun) and Moorside (Greater Manchester)
(handgun) and Shops (11) in Birkby (West Yorkshire) (shotgun),
Cowlersley and Milnsbridge (West Yorkshire) (two separate raids which are
being linked), Portsmouth (imitation firearm; a man has been charged),
Gloucester, Whalley Range (Manchester) (handgun), Droitwich
(Worcestershire) (pistol-like weapon; three teenagers were arrested),
Tunbridge Wells (Kent) (shotgun; a shot was fired), Danderhall
(Midlothian) (handgun), Edinburgh (handgun) and Gabalfa (Cardiff)
were reported of armed robberies from December 2010: two teenagers have
been arrested following two raids on a bookmakers in Crosby (Merseyside),
there was an armed robbery on a petrol station in Corby (Northamptonshire)
involving a shotgun, and in Finsbury Park (north London) a shopkeeper's
son was pistol-whipped during an attempted robbery. A robbery on a shop
in South Woodgate in November 2010 was also reported - staff were
threatened with a stun gun.
on Houses mobile phones and jewellery were stolen from a property
in Ringstead (Northamptonshire), and a woman was threatened with a gun and
a knife by a gang of men who burst into her home in Pitsea (Essex) and
stole a mobile phone.
Street robberies apparently involving guns three teenagers had their
mobile phones stolen in Glossop (Derbyshire) (stun gun), a woman was
robbed of her handbag in Glasgow (handgun), and two men were threatened
with a shotgun when they went to view a car in Newhey (Greater
Driver had his vehicle stolen in Walsall (West Midlands) by three men
who threatened him at gunpoint. Cigarettes were stolen from a Lorry
Driver during a delivery to a service station in Chalford
(Gloucestershire) by three men possibly armed with a handgun. A female
Car Driver was ordered out of her vehicle at gunpoint in High Wycombe
(Buckinghamshire) but the offender fled when a passer-by came over - the
incident is being linked to three other robberies including one at a
petrol station (see above). Three men armed with various weapons,
including a possible gun, threatened a young man outside his home near
Marsden (West Yorkshire) and demanded his car keys but fled empty-handed.
were fired during a number of other incidents in January:
Durham - a road sign in Mile Lonnen was damaged by bullets from a .22
a shot is alleged to have been fired when a gang forced their way into a
house in Vange
- a street corner in Manor House was cordoned off after reports of
gunshots being fired, and police were investigating a claim that a gun
had been fired in Harlesden
Merseyside - shotgun pellets were fired at a house in Huyton
Nottinghamshire - a gun was fired in Radford (Nottingham) (a man was
arrested on suspicion of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger
Scotland - a man was charged with possessing recklessly discharging a
firearm in Bridge of Allan (Stirlingshire), and shots were fired at a
property in Maryhill (Glasgow) leaving holes in the living hole window
Yorkshire - a shotgun was fired at the front door of a house in Keighley
(six men and three women have been arrested)
been fired at a house in Crewe (Cheshire) in an incident which occurred in
December 2010 - two men were arrested.
detained after a 5-hour standoff with police in Aigburth (Liverpool) was
charged with possession of a handgun and ammunition - in an earlier
related incident a pedestrian was threatened with a pistol by a motorist
London a woman and five men were arrested for possession of a firearm with
intent to endanger life after witnesses saw suspects "waving guns around"
in Chiswick (west London), and police arrested an alleged gunman in Fulham
after a tip-off that two men armed with a shotgun and a pistol had been
seen arriving at a house.
A man was
arrested in St Columb Minor (Cornwall) after reports that a man made
threats to shoot members of the public.
A man was
seen apparently holding a shotgun during an attack on a house in Luton
(Bedfordshire). Police were called to a house in Ashford (Surrey) after
reports that a man had been seen with a gun - no guns were found but four
people were arrested. In Attleborough (Norfolk) police responded to a
report that a man had been seen carrying a gun but the manhunt was called
off following a search of the area.
17-year-old from South Hackney (east London) has been charged after being
stopped and found to be carrying a Taser.
Airguns and Imitation Guns
police officer was shot at with a BB gun when he went to a house in
Swindon (Wiltshire) following reports of a disturbance (a man has been
charged with possession of a firearm with intent to resist arrest).
rifle was fired at a train in Normanton (West Yorkshire) damaging its
and imitation weapons were probably used in many of the armed robberies
and this was certainly so in the robberies in Vauxhall (Liverpool),
Portsmouth, and Ellesmere Port (Cheshire). A man was charged in
connection with nine offences including ones relating to an attempted
robbery in Slough (Berkshire) in December 2010 which involved an imitation
were other incidents involving airguns and imitation weapons which caused
was arrested on suspicion of possession of an imitation firearm with
intent to cause fear of violence following a confrontation with a
paramedic in Arborfield (Berkshire)
was arrested for possession of an air rifle with intent to cause fear of
violence after an incident in the centre of Yatton (Somerset)
people were arrested after a woman was seen wielding a weapon in Whitley
Bay (Tyneside) - an air rifle was recovered
rifle was seized by police and a man arrested on suspicion of making
threats to kill at the scene of an incident in Bourne (Lincolnshire)
was arrested at a furniture store in Blaydon (Teesside) after allegedly
threatening staff with an imitation gun
was arrested after an air pistol was brandished and staff threatened at
a nightclub in Abergavenny (Gwent)
young men were arrested on suspicion of possessing an imitation firearm
with intent to commit an indictable offence after reports of a gun being
pointed out of a car in Nottingham - a BB gun was recovered.
seen carrying a silver handgun in Exeter (Devon) was given "suitable words
of advice" by police when a toy gun was confiscated. Two teenagers found
carrying ball bearing guns in Devizes (Wiltshire) were given advice but
were not arrested.
Recoveries and Thefts
were found during searches in which drugs were recovered in Wellingborough
(Northamptonshire) (handgun), Merseyside (air rifle), Thornaby (Teesside)
(sawn-off shotgun), and Sighthill (Glasgow) (handgun and bullets; two men
and a woman were arrested)
were arrested when a handgun was found at a home in Alvaston (Derby). In
Liverpool a teenager was arrested in Norris Green after a sawn-off shotgun
was found, and a man and a woman were arrested after a pistol was
discovered in Stockbridge Village. A man was arrested at his home in
Newport (Pembrokeshire) after police found an alleged stolen shotgun.
girl testing a metal detector found a handgun in woods in Derby.
stolen from properties in Tardebigge (Worcestershire) (shotgun),
Chittlehampton (Devon) (air rifle) and Far Forest (Worcestershire)
Incidents Involving Animals
- Cats were again targeted in a number of shootings during January - they
were shot with airgun pellets in Cardiff, Conwy, Essex, Lincolnshire, Mid
Glamorgan and Warwickshire, and another cat was shot in Surrey but the
weapon used has not been identified.
pigeon was shot and killed with an air rifle in Lidlington (Bedfordshire)
and seven geese and two ducks were shot dead, probably with an air rifle,
in Todmorden (West Yorkshire).
teenager who shot down seagulls in Peebles has admitted recklessly
discharging an air rifle.
- A man from Nordelph (Norfolk) who shot two of his neighbours with a
shotgun following a feud over their dog was found guilty of two counts of
attempted murder and possession of a firearm with intent to cause serious
harm and was jailed for 18 years.
involved in a drive-by shooting in Mile East (east London) have been
convicted of various offences including, in one case, attempted murder -
they will serve sentences of between 4 years and a minimum of 12 years.
A man who
fired his licensed shotgun into the ceiling of his ex-girlfriend's home in
Navenby (Lincolnshire) admitted possessing a firearm with intent to cause
fear of violence, causing actual bodily harm and criminal damage and was
jailed for 4 years.
from Lydbrook (Gloucestershire) who shot himself in the arm whilst he was
drunk and depressed with a handgun he had made himself admitted
manufacturing a prohibited weapon, possessing the weapon and possessing a
round of hollow point exploding ammunition - he was given a 3 year 4 month
an incident in which shots were fired at a house in Fulwood (Lancashire) a
man has been sentenced to 5 years after pleading guilty to possession of a
firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.
A man who
threatened a man with a rifle at his flat in Wheatley (South Yorkshire)
has been jailed for more than 3 years.
following cases involved firearms being used in robberies - in some cases
it was not clear whether the gun was real or an imitation.
who admitted carrying out a raid on a post office in Toryglen (Glasgow)
with a firearm or imitation gun has been jailed for 4 years.
offender has pleaded guilty to robbing a shop in Kessingland (Suffolk)
where a gun was said to have been brandished.
brothers who were part of a gang who raided a post office in Owston
(Lincolnshire) armed with sawn-off shotguns pleaded guilty and were
jailed for 17 years and 4 years 8 months.
young men have both admitted two robbery charges after robbing two men
at gunpoint in Cirencester (Gloucestershire) and have been sentenced to
who used pistols, Tasers and machetes in a number of raids across East
Anglia have been convicted.
were the following convictions for possessing firearms and/or ammunition:
Merseyside a man pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm with intent
to endanger life and possession of ammunition with intent to endanger
life and been jailed for 6 years (the loaded pistol was found during a
routine stop check), a teenager who dumped a handgun during a police
raid at his home in Wavertree admitted possessing the firearm and
ammunition and was given a 5-year custodial sentence, a man found with a
sawn-off shotgun at his home in Belle Vale pleaded guilty to possessing
a Section 1 firearm was jailed for 3 years and 4 months, and another man
has admitted having a sawn-off shotgun at his mother's house in Huyton
and is serving a 6½-year sentence.
were a number of convictions of offenders from London. A man who hid a
self-loading pistol and ammunition at his mother's home in Brixton has
been jailed for 5½ years. Two men found with a pistol and ammunition
whilst driving around Hackney have pleaded guilty to possession charges
and were jailed for 7 and 5 years. Two other men arrested with a loaded
handgun in Downham were found guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm
with intent to commit an indictable offence and conspiracy to commit
robbery - they had been involved in armed attacks in Welling and West
Wickham. A 20-year-old from Maida Vale admitted possessing a prohibited
firearm and ammunition without a firearm certificate after admitting
concealing a modified handgun and four bullets at a block of flats.
West Midlands a man who barricaded himself in a flat in Allesley
(Coventry) pleaded guilty to being in possession of a prohibited firearm
and two counts of being in possession of ammunition without a licence
and was jailed for 6½ years. A man has admitted possessing a pistol
containing four bullets discovered at his house in Longford, and another
offender who kept a sawn-off shotgun at his house in Blakenhall pleaded
guilty to aggravated possession of a firearm and was given a 4-year
who kept an arsenal of guns and ammunition in his flat in Dartford
(Kent) has been jailed for 5 years after admitting possessing a
prohibited firearm, two charges of possessing a prohibited weapon,
possessing a firearm without a certificate and two charges of possessing
has pleaded guilty to possessing a sawn-off shotgun and a single
barrelled shotgun without a firearms certificate after the weapons were
found at a house in Huddersfield (West Yorkshire). A man who had a
100-year-old gun at his home in Yeadon (Leeds) was found guilty of
possessing a prohibited firearm and jailed for 2½ years.
Bulgarian lorry driver found with an assault rifle, handgun and drugs in
his vehicle at Dover (Kent) pleaded guilty to two counts of possession
of a firearm and two drugs offences - another man also pleaded guilty to
the same charges.
who shot himself in Harbottle (Northumberland) with a rifle belonging to
his father pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm without a certificate.
who waved a wartime handgun at a group of teenagers in Linwood
(Renfrewshire) admitted possessing the prohibited weapon without a
firearms certificate and was ordered to carry out 400 hours of community
who found a rifle cartridge on Dartmoor (Devon) pleaded guilty to
possession of the rifle cartridge without holding a firearms certificate
as well as drug offences and was ordered to do 150 hours of unpaid work
- A man who admitted possessing a stun gun which was found at his home in
Haigh (Greater Manchester) was given a community order with 200 hours
Midlands man involved in a fraud trial also admitted possessing a stun gun
found when police searched his home.
from Dudley (West Midlands) found in possession of a stun gun and stolen
cameras pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property and possessing a
prohibited weapon - he was given a suspended 12-week jail term and ordered
to carry out unpaid work.
Airguns and Imitation Guns (Court Cases)
teenager from Sheffield who shot a taxi driver in the head with pellets
from a ball bearing gun pleaded guilty to wounding with intent to do
grievous bodily harm and possessing an imitation firearm with intent to
cause fear of violence.
following cases involved the use of airguns and imitation guns to
who was drunk when he fired a ball bearing gun at a hospital in Leeds
admitted possessing an imitation firearm and was given a suspended
9-month prison sentence and a condition of undergoing an alcohol
who pulled the trigger of a ball-bearing gun while aiming it at a group
of men in Brighouse (West Yorkshire) has admitted possessing an
imitation firearm and been sentenced to 21 months.
pleaded guilty to possession of an imitation firearm to cause fear of
violence and false imprisonment after a victim had been taken from a
property in Leyland (Lancashire) - they were jailed for 2 years 6 months
and 3 years 10 months.
who pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm, a gas-powered air rifle,
without the correct licence has pleaded not guilty to possession a
firearm with intent to cause another man fear of violence following an
incident near Wonford (Devon)
who went round to the home of her cleaner in Witham (Essex) brandishing
a BB gun pleaded guilty to affray and was given a conditional discharge
15-year-old pointed an air rifle at a father who went to reclaim his
son's stolen bike in Allenton (Derby) - he admitted possession of an
imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and other
offences and has been given a 2-year detention and training order
spite of admitting possessing an imitation firearm with intent after
thrusting a ball-bearing gun into another man's face in Oxford, a man
was given an absolute discharge by the judge.
were a number of convictions for robberies and attempted robberies in
which the offender(s) was armed with an imitation firearm. The incidents
in Portsmouth (a man who was armed with a fake handgun pleaded guilty to
attempted robbery and possessing an imitation firearm), St Leonards
(East Sussex) (a 17-year-old who used a fake gun during a raid has been
jailed for more than 2 years), and Hamilton (South Lanarkshire) (a
member of staff was struck by a pellet from an imitation pistol - the
offender has been jailed for 3 years)
Bookmaker's in Acocks Green (Birmingham) (a man has been sentenced
to 9 years for charges of robbery, attempted robbery, possession of a
machete and an imitation firearm)
Bank in Rye (East Sussex) (a man pleaded guilty to robbery and
possessing an imitation firearm and was jailed for 2 years)
Car in Leicester (two teenagers armed with an air pistol who
attacked and robbed three friends eating a takeaway admitted robbery and
possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence
and were both sentenced to 3 years and 4 months)
Street robbery in Enfield (north London) in which three young
offenders attempted to steal money during a bogus car sale (they
admitted kidnap, robbery and possession of an imitation firearm and one
of them was jailed for 7 years and the other two for 6 years and 2
A man who
pretended to have a shotgun whilst using a vacuum cleaner attachment
pleaded guilty to raiding three bookmakers in Liverpool.
found with a BB gun and a crossbow at his home in Accrington (Lancashire)
has been convicted of drug offences and jailed for 18 months.
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