Man arrested for brandishing gun at estate agent admits firearm charge

A man arrested after brandishing a gun at a man flying a drone outside his house in the Cotswolds has admitted possessing an imitation firearm in public and is to be sentenced next month.

In August last year, Michael Edwards, 72, of Shepherd’s Way, Cirencester, Gloucestershire, was arrested after video – see below – showed the OAP confronting the drone user, estate agency videographer Daine Gooden, in the street outside his home after firing at the quadcopter.

Edwards claimed he had been trying to shoot the drone using the weapon – telling the pilot: “You bring it over my house and I will fire at it…

“If you do it again, I will fire at it again. I took three shots at it and I missed.”

At Cirencester Courthouse Edwards, 72, of Shepherds Way, Cirencester, pleaded not guilty to a charge of possessing an imitation firearm – a Huntington Beach G10 repeater air pistol – with intent to cause Gooden to believe that unlawful violence would be used against him.

But Edwards did plead guilty to a less serious charge of having a firearm in a public place, Shepherds Way, Cirencester, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, on 22 August 2022.

Prosecutor Catherine Flint said the pleas were acceptable to the Crown and no evidence would be offered on the more serious charge.

Defending Edwards, Sarah Jenkins said the charge he had admitted, and which had been accepted by the prosecution, was significantly less serious than the original charge which he had denied.

Jenkins said: “We are therefore in the realm of a community order and, with that in mind, I suggest that a pre-sentence report is requested.

“Mr Edwards is a man of previous good character. I understand he has issues about doing unpaid work if this were to be part of any community-based sentence.”

The Judge, Recorder Emma Zeb, told Edwards: “The court always tries to progress cases when it can as it’s never desirable to leave sentencing to another date.

“However, this is your first conviction, for which the guidelines to the charge that you’ve admitted point to a community-based sentence. And under these circumstances it would be appropriate for the sentencing judge to know more about you and to find out what were the underlying factors to this offence and I therefore request that a pre-sentence report is carried out.”

The judge released Edwards on unconditional bail to return to the Cirencester Courthouse on 28 April for sentence.

Footage shows the drone pilot being threatened by a stranger brandishing a gun. Warning: foul language. 

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