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12-year-old sparks police gun alert with imitation handgun in Birmingham park

Editorial Correspondent 6th Oct, 2020 Updated: 6th Oct, 2020

A 12-YEAR-OLD boy sparked fears of a firearms incident after police were alerted to reports of a gunman waving a handgun in a Birmingham park.

West Midlands Police responded to the incident on Sunday afternoon (October 4) in Billesley Common to find a schoolboy in possession of an imitation pistol.

The imitation handgun had been painted black in a bid to make it appear more like a genuine pistol, police say. It is understood he was showing the weapon to a group of friends and there is no suggestion the boy used the imitation firearm to threaten anyone or to commit an offence.

The 12-year-old, from Sparkbrook, was detained at the scene in Billesley Common but later released without charge after police spoke to his parents about the public concern his actions had caused.

Chief Inspector Jason Nunn from our Firearms Unit said: “As you can see it’s a very realistic replica. I would challenge anyone to distinguish this from the genuine article – especially if only seen from a distance.

“We received a call from someone who’d seen him pull the gun from a bag and point it at a group of young men he was with. They ducked behind a car so were clearly worried.

“Officers approached the boy in the park and seized the handgun. He was sorry for his actions and we took him home where we spoke to his parents. They were warned about his future conduct and told in no uncertain terms his actions were totally unacceptable.

“Carrying an imitation firearm in public, even a toy gun, can cause great concern and lead to a response from our officers.”

Police seized the imitation handgun and it will be destroyed.

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