by Steve Beasant on 29 October, 2014
Every Saturday, come rain or shine Lib Dem Councillor for the East Marsh Steve Beasant holds his weekly Ward Surgery on Freeman Street Market 10am – 12-noon. When Councillors arrive at their Ward Surgery, they never know what problems they are going to face and who will turn-up – if anyone?
Fortunately for Steve, his Saturday mornings are generally busy; he deals with anything from housing issues, environmental problems and matters relating to crime and ASB.
But last Saturday, he soon realised that his Ward Surgery would be something different to the norm, the Grimsby Telegraph reports:
A GRIMSBY councillor was “shocked and stunned” at being handed a gun by a member of the public at one of his community surgeries.
East Marsh Liberal Democrat councillor Steve Beasant was “flabbergasted” when the woman pulled out the weapon, pictured above, and handed it to him, asking him to pass it on to police as she had just found it near Freeman Street market. She had it hidden in a bag in order to prevent causing alarm to members of the public.
Today, Humberside Police officers have praised the woman for doing the right thing by handing in the weapon, which later turned out to be a BB gun, adding that, in the wrong hands, they can cause serious injury.
The woman told Councillor Beasant she had found the gun earlier in the morning, taking the weapon along to his regular Saturday surgery inside Freeman Street Market.
The councillor immediately contacted Humberside Police and a team of specialist firearms officers attended to take it away and destroy it.
He told the Grimsby Telegraph: “I was flabbergasted. I don’t think there is a councillor in this country who has had a gun handed over to them in a surgery.
“In future if anyone finds anything like this they should contact Humberside Police immediately.”
Councillor Beasant said: “You could not tell if it was real or not. It looked like a serious weapon. If it had got into the hands of a kiddie, they would not have known and it could have turned into a really bad situation.
“No one would have known if it was loaded or not. You could not tell if it was a Russian-made weapon that fired or something imported from Taiwan as a toy. It was impossible to tell.”
Councillor Beasant added: “When I was on the phone to the police they advised not to touch it until officers arrived.
“It is shocking to think someone had been going around with it earlier. It would have caused a great deal of distress to someone if they had seen it.
“If someone had called the police because they saw someone with it, it would have led to a full-scale emergency.”
The ward councillor and former deputy of Humberside Police Authority was full of praise for the woman.
He said: “The resident needs to be thanked for bringing it in to the surgery. It was a job well done. The police said they were pleased to have something like this off the street.
“I hope nothing like this happens again. It made a change from the usual housing and environmental matters I have at a surgery.”
Inspector Heather Cawson of Humberside Police confirmed the weapon was a BB gun and that it was later disposed of.
She also praised the member of the public who alerted the councillor.
She said: “We attended to see if it was a real gun and deployed officers with knowledge of firearms.
“We would advise people to ring the police straight away if they find anything similar as you do not know if it is real or not. To pick it up and start handling it has safety implications.
“It’s widely accepted that using BB guns without following safety guidelines is dangerous and can lead to injury.”
“At the end of the day no harm was done and the gun was collected. It is good that it has been taken off the street.”Leave a comment