Gun pointed in police officer’s face

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FOUR people have been arrested after police in Wigan were confronted by a gang brandishing machetes and an air rifle.

One of the gang even pointed the gun in the face of one of the officers in a threatening manner.

I hope this incident both demonstrates to the people of Wigan the dangers that officers face every day when responding to what might seem like a straightforward call, and that officers are trained to safely deal with such violence when faced by armed gangs to protect the public

DCI Michael Fraser

It happened at a house on Maple Crescent in Leigh at around 10pm on Wednesday.

Police were initially called to the house following reports of criminal damage, but when the officers attended they were confronted by a gang of men armed with machetes and a gun.

One of the gang pointed the gun at the face of the police. He was subsequently subdued with a Taser and then arrested. The man was uninjured.

Four men aged 19. 47, 29 and 27-years-old were arrested on suspicion of affray, and the 19-year-old man was also arrested on suspicion of a firearm. All four remain in custody for questioning.

Officers later searched the house and recovered the gun which was later revealed to be an air gun, plus a pellet gun, more than 170 pellets, a chrome bar and machetes. They have been recovered for forensic analysis.

Detective Chief Inspector Michael Fraser said: “What this incident shows is the dangers police officers face day in, day out, to protect the public.

“The officers initially responded to a report of criminal damage, only to be confronted by an armed gang with machetes and a gun. The gun was pointed directly in the face of the officer, and at that time it was impossible to know whether it was a genuine firearm or an air rifle.

“Faced with such intimidating and threatening circumstances, the officers acted appropriately by using a Taser and as a result, arrested all the members of the gang without injury to either themselves or anyone at the house.

“I hope this incident both demonstrates to the people of Wigan the dangers that officers face every day when responding to what might seem like a straightforward call, and that officers are trained to safely deal with such violence when faced by armed gangs to protect the public.

“I would also urge anyone who has information about this incident to come forward by calling either 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.”