View Full Version : Another "shot" against the victim?

29th Mar 2005, 12:20
When so many real vandals and criminals seem to get off with a caution or a meaningless sentence, this seemed a bit steep to me.

From the BBC today:

A special needs teacher who fired a pellet gun at youths she claimed had vandalised her house has been jailed for six months.

Linda Walker, 48, was "ranting and raving like a lunatic" when she fired the gun, a court had heard.
Mrs Walker, of Hollyhouse Drive, Urmston, Gtr Manchester, was convicted of affray and possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear or violence.
She said she was under stress at the time of the incident on 14 August 2004.
Mrs Walker claimed a campaign of vandalism by "yobbos" had driven her to fire the gun at the feet of a gang of teenagers she confronted near her home.
The teacher of children with behavioural difficulties at New Park School, Salford, had kept the gun in her underwear drawer for four months since her shed was burgled.

She had also received nuisance phone calls abusing her 17-year-old son James while her other son Craig's car had been vandalised. Fish had been stolen from her pond and her garden ornaments were thrown over a wall, her trial heard.
The final straw came when a washing-up liquid bottle full of water was emptied over her son's car, she said.
She went outside to confront the youths and, in a phone call to police, said: "I'm going over to that field over the road, I've got an air rifle and a pistol and I'm going to shoot the vandals that come around here.
"I've got an air rifle and a pistol and I'm going to shoot them."
Mrs Walker fired the pistol at the road near the feet of Robert McKiernan, 18.
'Overstepped the line'
She showed little emotion as she was sentenced at Manchester's Minshull St Crown Court on Tuesday to six months for possessing the firearm and one month for affray. The sentences will run concurrently.
Her 56-year-old partner, John Cavanagh, was cleared of affray last month.
Greater Manchester Police said there was no "particular problem" with anti-social behaviour in the Urmston area and insisted there was "no evidence" to suggest the Walkers had been targeted for abuse by youths.
"While we support homeowners protecting themselves in line with the recent ACPO and CPS guidelines, Mrs Walker over stepped the line and attacked a group in an unprovoked, disproportionate manner," Det Sgt Frank Hayley, of Trafford CID, said.
"The use of a firearm was an extreme reaction and Greater Manchester Police will not tolerate the use such a weapon on the street, irrespective of the offender's justification."

29th Mar 2005, 12:35
I agree, it's a bit over the top. What anyone in Mrs. Walker's circumstances really needs at Hollyhouse Drive is:


And in case the yobbos continue their annoyances, have ready a few boiling pots of tar to pour over the cretins... :8

29th Mar 2005, 12:36
Just got a feelingMr Draper might have something or even things to say on this thread!

Would he have bothered with a warning shot at the feet, one enquires?

29th Mar 2005, 13:19
Having seen a piccie of said perp I would have backed off from her without an air pistol being waved in my direction.

tony draper
29th Mar 2005, 13:25
Since when has a air pistol been a firearm?, I'll stand thirty feet away and yer can shoot at me all day with me webley senior, 6 foot pounds might sting but thats all, firearm me arse.
Said it before,the time is rapidly coming that if your house is burgled you will be arrested for owning insecure property.

29th Mar 2005, 13:35
Hmmm was proud possesor of a Dianna in the old days which I thought was a mean machine, would take a pigeon out no problem, and for thems that are wincing and about to give cry, I was feeding a pair of orphaned Auger Buzzards at the time. They each eat one each a day and I was very glad when they were old enough to fly away. And no my pocket money did not run to steak for them. My son-in-law presently owns a .177 West German job that is many times more powerful and makes the old Dianna seem like a peashooter. Similarly the Webley air pistol I had then was I thought pretty good, but a Checkoslovakian target model owned by a friend however again is very much more powerful. Now use present day .22 calibre air weapons throwing a larger heavier pellet and you are definitely talking something that would get your attention sharpish were you to be the unfortunate recipient on the wrong end.

tony draper
29th Mar 2005, 14:15
The law in this country restricted air weapons muzzle energy to 6 foot pounds for pistols 12 foot pounds for rifles, to put that in perspective,the .22 short rim fire ammo called caps they use in fairground shooting galleries and such have no cordite propellant in the cartridge case, they only use the gas from the primer, they produce 30 foot lbs if memory serves.
We used to get a bit more welt out of out airguns by squirting a bit diesel fuel down the cylinder, but yer could be nicked for that.

29th Mar 2005, 14:39
One lives and keeps on learning, now if only I had known about the diesel. Didn't know about the fairground caps either.

29th Mar 2005, 21:50
Likewise, "some" folk used model aircraft diesel fuel. Puts a .177 through 10mm ply if you got the mixture correct! Allegedly.


I was once (30 years ago) shown a stainless steel air rifle and matching pistol made by a retired engineer. Used a pneumatic compressor for a road drill to charge them up. The .22 rifle provided many times over the limit of 12 ft lbs so it was deemed illegal and had to be ..er... destroyed.

16 blades
29th Mar 2005, 22:08
Nice. Wonder if petrol would work just as well as diesel??

Bern Oulli
30th Mar 2005, 05:31
Shytorque, no "allegedly" about it. It does (did in my misbegotten youth anyway). Makes a satisfying bang together with a realistic amount of smoke smelling unrealistically of ..... diesel fuel.
16Blades No. Unless you intend to introduce a spark plug into your air gun. Petrol does not explode under compression.

30th Mar 2005, 06:09
Some jurisdictions define a firearm as "any weapon discharged by a trigger mechanism", which takes in all air and gas-powered weapons, as well as crossbows and other things such as rubber-band guns - if they have a dsicrete trigger mechanism. This begs the question "what actually constitutes a trigger mechanism" - and I don't kow the answer, but I'll bet the legal eagles will have some catch-all definition ready at hand.

Re "dieseling" in air-powered weapons.:- Light sewing-machine oil, diesel fuel or just plain good old ether all work very well. A really powerful example of "dieseling" has been know to actually blow the core of the (177-cal) pellet out of the skirt section.

Unless the amount of oil introduced into the cylinder is metered very accurately, accuracy varies considerably due to variations in muzzle velocity.

Any legal system that affords more rights to the perpetrator than to the victim is a legal system which holds the society it rules in contenpt. Thus are laid the foundations for eventual loss of confidence in the system by the populace at large, massive corruption and eventual social revolution when mob-law replaces the rule-of-law.

Of course, this is never the fault of the desigers or enforcers of these legal systems. It is the fault of those who are so held in contempt that they rebel.

"He who goes to the law for a remedy takes a wolf by the ears."

30th Mar 2005, 06:30
Unless the amount of oil introduced into the cylinder is metered very accurately so my 2 drops of 3-in-one many years ago in trusted Original .177 prolly wouldn't count as "very accurately. But it would go through a biscuit tin at the end of our yard .... we used to call it (with a distinct lack of engineering expertise) "supercharging"; ISTR that after introducing the 3-in-one you had to "fire" the weapon without a slug to vaporise the oil...

30th Mar 2005, 09:03
"Shytorque, no "allegedly" about it. It does (did in my misbegotten youth anyway). Makes a satisfying bang together with a realistic amount of smoke smelling unrealistically of ..... diesel fuel. "

Er, Yes, I know, I know. ;) Just didn't want to appear that I knew!

Well, Milud, now that I've incriminated myself, I would like the court to take into consideration a number of other offences. Such as emptying 12 bore shotgun cartridges and melting down the pellets into one solid shot (try firing one through a 45 gallon drum full of water but be careful, the gun recoil might break your shoulder).

Also making "interesting visual and audible displays" from fertiliser, sugar and a sprinkling of diesel fuel. A chemical time delay fuse is the safest way of setting these off, but i'm not giving out details!

Putting lighter refill canisters into bonfire ashes upside down so that the plastic top melts. Highly spectacular, almost Saturn Five territory, especially at night (well it was the space age).

Sometime later, a military Thunderflash and a large tin of NAAFI beans in a field gun at a certain RAF station was good fun as long as it wasn't pointed at anything important. (They later welded a plate over the muzzle end).

I won't mention the Napalm episode as it goes against the Geneva Convention. :O

tony draper
30th Mar 2005, 09:28
hmmm sounds like yer were spying on my gang ST,we did all those thing but we also discovered the acetylene bomb which seems to have escaped you.

PS those railway track detonators were very good as well.

henry crun
30th Mar 2005, 09:43
Tampering with shotgun cartridges, thunderflashes, acetylene bombs , bah.

That is cissy stuff compared to a treacle tin full of cordite with a long fuse. :D

30th Mar 2005, 12:00
Acetylene bombs, Herr Draper? Do you mean what happens when you throw bread up to seagulls and then start throwing them lumps of carbide...... a terrible thing to do... POP! :ugh:

Never trespassed on the railway though. My grandfather was a rail worker and was killed doing his job, saw what that did to my grandmother.

Hand grenades were specifically banned by my father too, after his boss's only son had his hand blown off by a prematurely exploding brass bedknob gunpowder grenade.

30th Mar 2005, 12:13
Just why dp people keep their weapons in their underwear draws anyway?

Henry Crun - As a lad grew up on the Noth Kent Coast, was an abundance of cordite sticks washed ashore with every tide. Had some, er, rather spectacular experiments - do not fill old vacuum cleaner aluminium pipe with cordite and expect it to fly gracefully through the air. Interestingly visited recently and there were still a few around but not as many as I remember - you have to know where to look!

Never did work out where they came from.

30th Mar 2005, 12:13
Dieseling damages the seals on the cursed things, as I found when taking a rifle that had been dieseling apart for a freind, who had found it was not performing quite up to standards. and, er, yes... old compressed leather seals not happy bunnies.

Use a HW97K in .22 nowadays for the rabbits, though I have an old FWB35 .177 target rifle as well as the '97 and 12s.

Potato cannon anyone? all you need is some drainpipes, carpet cleaner, and a piez lighter....

30th Mar 2005, 12:16
Ahhh, bar bazookas........

30th Mar 2005, 13:36
Had the Yobbo used the air gun and been given 6 months you would all raise hell that the sentence was too lenient. And rightly so.
A policeman was on the radio this morning commenting on why they can't respond to such calls. He made a very plausible argument about rescources, explaining that they had other priorities, i.e. burglary and so on. I would say to him that his priority should be the Yobbos who roam the streets who later go on to become burglars.
I agree that 6 months seems harsh but if you go equipped and actually carry out the shooting you deserve to go to jail. She might have got the reccommended 5 years with some other judge!

31st Mar 2005, 15:39
Part of the problem of course was her declared intention to do exactly what she did leaving the authorities little leeway had they wished to exercise discretion which they probably wouldn't have anyway in this case. She does appear to have been harrassed to quite the extent that one has heard if the list in the paper is anything to go by of which doesn't excuse it at all, but does seem to indicate she may have had a shorter fuse than most. And some of her police calls may well have been low on their priority list at the time.
An ususual post for me who normaly is calling for drastic action on antisocial behaviour by the yobs.

My 'anti social' youthful experimentation was carried out in isolation and the pyrothechnics obtained with weed killer suger and cotton, or lengths of 2" pipe threaded and capped, Jetex fuse and cordite extracted from .303 cartridges, would only have damaged me. Many satisfactory bangs were produced and I fortunately retained an undamaged carcass. The 12 bore experiment involved removing shot and substituting coarse ground salt. Wasn't great for the barrels, would produce a non-lethal nighttime deterrent for Serval cats at the chickens and other possible intruders.

31st Mar 2005, 15:43
Sounds like great fun, Paterbrat. One used to blow off teenage steam by blasting small frogs to oblivion with a .22. :E

31st Mar 2005, 15:46
Probably the equivalent of a 25 pounder shell on a human, overkill perhaps?

31st Mar 2005, 15:53
Well, that was the point, at the time anyway. One tries to overlook that fact that in hindsight it was a ridiculously juvenile thing to do. Come to think of it, so was playing commando with live ammo in abandoned farmhomes. :}

31st Mar 2005, 17:01
was told that they sell special shotgun cartridges for trap shooting that reduce the recoil substantially. Is that true? And would such shot be lethal to an animal?