A dangerous man has been jailed for threatening bailiffs with a firearm which he later pointed at police officers.
Richard Todd, 52, of Foxberry Road SE4 2SR, was sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court on Monday, 19 December, to five years’ imprisonment.
He had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to two counts of possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence, possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of ammunition without a certificate.
On Wednesday, 16 February, two County Court bailiffs attended Todd’s home to execute a repossession of property warrant.
After gaining entry, they were confronted by Todd who was holding a handgun.
The bailiffs left the address and called police. Firearms officers responded and were met by Todd who pointed the gun at them.
The officers spoke with him, and after an intense standoff lasting approximately 20 minutes, he put the gun down. He was quickly arrested.
Officers searched his home and located further ammunition, 25 bulleted cartridges and 24 shotgun shells, along with a bulletproof vest.
The firearm was sent for forensic examination and was found to be a revolver-style air pistol that had been converted to a viable lethal firearm.
It was loaded with six rounds of live ammunition. He was charged two days later and remanded in custody.
Detective Constable Theo Green, from the South East Command Unit, said:
“No one expects to have a gun pointed at them whilst they’re going about their job. This must have been a truly terrifying experience for the two bailiffs.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to praise my colleagues in the Firearms Command who responded that day. The composure they showed, and their ability to talk a gunman down, shows true professionalism. The outcome of that day could have been much different.”
Detective Chief Superintendent Donna Smith, of the Met’s Firearm Command, said:
“This incident demonstrates the bravery and professionalism of our firearms officers, who confront incidents like this on a daily basis to protect the public and unarmed officers.
“This was one of the approximately 4,000 spontaneous firearms incidents we responded to over the last 12 months and shows how our officers will use their communication skills to de-escalate and conclude an incident safely.
“I am extremely proud of their response that day.”
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