Air Rifle Incident Resulting in Boy's Death.

I read the sad news of Stanley Metcalf (age 6) death from an air gun shooting injury. The BBC report mentions of the perpetrator. "The 78-year-old also admitted possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate."

It seems unlikely this is poor reporting on the possession of a sub 12flb gun and so the gun was Section 1. How does someone simply get one of those without an FAC I wonder? I can't imagine there are that many around to nick or that such things are what the underworld gun sellers would be offering.

I've heard you can uprate them to exceed the limit but how many bother going to that length? I would imagine that is not something a reputable armourer going to do in a back-room kind of style.

I am not sure on the idea of licensing air rifles/pistols but how to keep them out of the hands of idiots is a reasonable question I think. These types of incidents always seem to be the result of someone being utterly useless at safe handling.
 
It is not difficult to tune an airrifle to go over the limit. It doesn't need an amourer or gunsmith teenage boys have been doing it for decades. There are a lot of kits about with better springs and seals. These kits and other improvements can take a gun over the limit, depending on the pellets used.

As very few airgun owners posess a chronograph and can do the calculations. It is only a very very few competition shooters and pest controllers who might know if their airguns were over the limit. There are probably thousands of airgun around the UK that are, unknown by their owners, over the limit. Also many that might thought to be over the limit have anged and are nowhere near the limit.

However it is far more likely poor reporting. Airguns are reported as "firearms" by the police. If the police were asked if the holder had a firearms license the answerer would be "no". Therefore an "unlicensed firearm" totally overlooking the point that it didn't need a license.

The statement said "The 78-year-old also admitted possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate."

I also posses an air rifle without a FAC. Last time a friend checked it for me it didn't need to be licensed so I am admitting "possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate."
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
If its Scotland they are licensed, any links?
 
I take the point of
It is not difficult to tune an airrifle to go over the limit. It doesn't need an amourer or gunsmith teenage boys have been doing it for decades. There are a lot of kits about with better springs and seals. These kits and other improvements can take a gun over the limit, depending on the pellets used.

As very few airgun owners posess a chronograph and can do the calculations. It is only a very very few competition shooters and pest controllers who might know if their airguns were over the limit. There are probably thousands of airgun around the UK that are, unknown by their owners, over the limit. Also many that might thought to be over the limit have anged and are nowhere near the limit.

However it is far more likely poor reporting. Airguns are reported as "firearms" by the police. If the police were asked if the holder had a firearms license the answerer would be "no". Therefore an "unlicensed firearm" totally overlooking the point that it didn't need a license.

The statement said "The 78-year-old also admitted possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate."

I also posses an air rifle without a FAC. Last time a friend checked it for me it didn't need to be licensed so I am admitting "possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate."

I take the point on the poor reporting, an FAC may be irrelevant in this case but still the kind of thing that the BBC decides to include anyway. We will hear more in due course I guess.

That sub 12flb can (as shown in other cases) be dangerous/lethal is not something that most people would consider when owning/operating one. I don't know what should be done (if anything) about all of this though.
 
I take the point of
I take the point on the poor reporting, an FAC may be irrelevant in this case but still the kind of thing that the BBC decides to include anyway. We will hear more in due course I guess.

That sub 12flb can (as shown in other cases) be dangerous/lethal is not something that most people would consider when owning/operating one. I don't know what should be done (if anything) about all of this though.

Most murders inthe UK are done with kitchen knives. Most people in the UK are killed by licensed cars drive by licensed drivers.

in the past many children had a garden gun.... that is a 410 shotgun. Using live ammunition. Just because there is one accident does not mean there should be a blanket ban. That is just hysterical.

Now if the UK had gun or even airgun problems even 1/4 that of the USA then you might have a point. Untill then we first need to ban
Kitchen knives
Cars,
Garden tools
Bycicles
Motorbikes
Rugby
Hill Walking
white water rafting
skateboards
Russian toursists (but only in Wiltshire)
 
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I take the point on the poor reporting, an FAC may be irrelevant in this case but still the kind of thing that the BBC decides to include anyway. We will hear more in due course I guess.
All the of the news reports say he pleaded guilty to the Section 1 offence
That sub 12flb can (as shown in other cases) be dangerous/lethal is not something that most people would consider when owning/operating one. I don't know what should be done (if anything) about all of this though.
‘Specially dangerous’ over 12 ft/lb’s muzzle energy, requiring FAC in England and Wales
 
Bearing in mind there isn't yet an accepted established firm 100% reliable test for MV, Certain pellets can push a couple of foot pounds over the limit, these would be the ones chosen by nabis over the ones used even.
Normally you check with the pellets the firearm came with. If not, ensure the barrel was clean and one off the shelf. Again, because of chronographs and pellet weight, to say it was S1 you’d be looking at being consistently over the 12 ft/lb limit, with more than just a couple of pellets.
 
From 01 Jan 2017 All Air Weapons in Scotland needed a Scottish Air Weapons Certificate. Hence the unlicensed bit in the news, the old boy probably had no idea or did not bother.

but not a Firearms Certificate. As the comment was Firearms Certificate it was not Scotland.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Normally you check with the pellets the firearm came with. If not, ensure the barrel was clean and one off the shelf. Again, because of chronographs and pellet weight, to say it was S1 you’d be looking at being consistently over the 12 ft/lb limit, with more than just a couple of pellets.
I'd hope the testing was rigorous and not just as crap as the reporting
 
I'd hope the testing was rigorous and not just as crap as the reporting
Dunno tbh. He's pleaded guilty to the S1 offence, so I assume (whether rightly or wrongly) his lawyer has given him advice.

You could ask for a FoI on the MG11 statement on the tests conducted to say it was over 12 ft/lb's. For all I know, it was 15 ft/lb's
 

4(T)

LE
None of the news reports have any mention of ballistic testing, an expert firearms witness, or any identification of the air weapon brand and model that might identify it as S1.

Given the serious nature of the charge, one would have assumed that sort of information would have been central to the court case and thus the reporting.

I do wonder if the defendant was properly advised, or if it was necessary for him to plead guilty to the firearms charge.
 
All the of the news reports say he pleaded guilty to the Section 1 offence

‘Specially dangerous’ over 12 ft/lb’s muzzle energy, requiring FAC in England and Wales


Got to be honest here, if I accidently killed one of my grandchildren with one of my air rifles, I would plead guilty to pretty much anything Plod decided to charge me with.
I doubt very much I'd be inclined to argue my innocence
 
Got to be honest here, if I accidently killed one of my grandchildren with one of my air rifles, I would plead guilty to pretty much anything Plod decided to charge me with.
I doubt very much I'd be inclined to argue my innocence
He pleaded guilty to manslaughter and the S1 offence. According to the news reports and the Humberside Police press release, he's shown no remorse until his guilty ple:
Guilty plea over death of Stanley Metcalf | Humberside Police
“I am pleased that Albert Grannon has finally admitted his guilt and faced up to the enormity of his actions.

“Up to now he has shown no real remorse for what happened. I hope that now he will realise the effect and suffering that that terrible moment back in July 2018 has had on his parents Jenny and Andy and all those who knew Stanley.
 
How do you necessarily show remorse? He may have been in total abject shock at what he'd done and incapable of showing any emotion that might be considered appropriate.
I'm pretty sure in just under a year (26th July) , at some time when in Police custody, or interview or anything else, I would have at least said 'I'm sorry' for what I'd done. Maybe that's just me and we're all individuals as you say.
 

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