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History > 2012 > UK > Gun violence (I)




Man shot dead after police stop car

Two men arrested
and Independent Police Complaints Commission
called in after incident at Culcheth, Cheshire


Sunday 4 March 2012
07.03 GMT
Press Association
This article was published on guardian.co.uk
at 07.03 GMT on Sunday 4 March 2012.


A man has been shot dead during a police operation involving armed officers.

Cheshire police said the man was shot after the car he was in was stopped by officers from Greater Manchester police (GMP).

The incident, which took place in Culcheth on Saturday night, has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

Two men were arrested at the scene and are in police custody.

A Cheshire police spokesman said: "At around 7.20pm on Saturday March 3 an incident took place near Jackson Avenue in Culcheth, Cheshire, whereby a car was stopped by armed officers from Greater Manchester police.

"During the contact a male occupant of the car was shot and sustained fatal injuries.

"Two men were arrested at the scene and remain in custody. The deceased's next of kin have been informed.

"Cheshire constabulary and Greater Manchester police are now investigating the full circumstances of the incident and the Independent Police Complaints Commission have been informed.

"Cheshire police patrols have been increased in the area, and the community of Culcheth should be reassured that this is an isolated incident and there is no risk to the community as a whole."

A GMP spokesman confirmed the IPCC was investigating the fatal shooting.

    Man shot dead after police stop car, G, 4.3.2012,






Man who shot three women held gun licence

Man in Peterlee, County Durham shot himself and three female relatives.
A teenager escaped through an upstairs window


Monday 2 January 2012
12.58 GMT
Press Association
This article was published on guardian.co.uk at 12.58 GMT on Monday 2 January 2012. It was last modified at 15.28 GMT on Monday 2 January 2012. It was first published at 08.05 GMT on Monday 2 January 2012.


A man who shot himself after killing three women in Peterlee, County Durham, was a licensed holder of firearms, it has emerged.

The body of the man, named locally as taxi driver Michael Atherton, and those of the three women were found in close proximity downstairs in a semi-detached house after officers were alerted to shots being fired shortly before 11.45pm on Sunday.

Assistant Chief Constable Michael Banks of Durham Constabulary confirmed on Monday morning that a resident of the house held a firearms licence.

Police also confirmed that a teenage woman who suffered minor injuries escaped through an upstairs window, and there were other people in the house at the time who also survived, including a man who was initially arrested but later released without charge.

Detective Superintendent Paul Goundry said all the deceased were related. He also revealed that police had had "minor contact" with the family in the past.

Banks said: "I can confirm that a resident at that address was the lawful holder of shotgun and firearms licences and we cannot confirm at this stage whether any of those weapons that were lawfully held have been used in this."

Asked how many weapons were registered at that address, he said: "At this moment in time it is my understanding that the person was licensed for three shotguns and three section-1 firearms."

He said section-1 firearms were a particular category of firearms which require greater authorisation than a shotgun licence.

The ages of the female victims have not yet been established, but it is thought the youngest was in her teens.

A fifth person, a 19-year-old woman thought to be related to one of the victims, was treated for shotgun injuries in hospital in Stockton.

She was found by police at another house in the same street shortly after officers arrived at the house in Peterlee.

Durham police said she was "discharged after treatment as her injuries were found to be minor".

One local resident, who did not want to be identified, said it was a quiet area.

"I am shocked and stunned by this. This is just awful. Nothing happens in our street," she said.

Banks said: "This is a tragic event. We have four people who died late last night and our thoughts and feelings are with their family and friends at this moment.

"I would like to reassure our communities that the police are in control of this incident.

"At this moment, we are looking for no one else in relation to this inquiry."

He said just before 11.45 last night a number of calls were received in the police control room that shots had been fired at the house.

"Our information within those numerous messages was that several people had been shot.

"The police were dispatched to the scene and shortly after midnight, as our officers entered the house, it was discovered that a man and three women were dead in the house," he said.

"It is our belief at this stage that they died of gunshot wounds."

He said the scene had been preserved and a major investigation was under way.

Labour party ward councillor Paul Stradling said it was the most shocking incident he had come across in 30 years as a politician.

He said: "I have had a few phone calls this morning asking if I was aware of it it's terrible news.

"It's a typical north-east village, quiet most of the time with a little bit of antisocial behaviour but crime levels are usually low."

    Man who shot three women held gun licence, G, 2.1.2012,





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