Police were called this morning (Wednesday 9th August) to reports of a male walking on Lytham Road with a handgun, who was said to be “pulling the trigger” at members of the public as he walked by them.
Shortly after, the male got on a bus which was promptly followed by officers. After noticing officers were following, the male ran off the bus and dropped the weapon. He was then detained.
The male, 18, from South Yorkshire, was arrested on suspicion of possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence. He is currently in custody.
Police would now like to reassure the public that the weapon used was a BB gun – an imitation firearm.
Chief Superintendent Karen Edwards said: ‘As a result of the report my officers were immediately deployed resulting in a swift arrest and recovery of what transpired to be a realistic imitation firearm. I know that people may have understandably felt frightened and distressed by this incident, and I want to reassure them that the firearm reported has been confirmed as an imitation firearm and no persons were injured during the incident.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind the public that carrying imitation firearms, which include BB guns, and air weapons (whether loaded or not) without a lawful authority or reasonable excuse in a public place is a criminal offence, and clearly causes the general public a great deal of distress – which I will not tolerate.
I would like to pass on my thanks to the officer who responded instantly to this incident and showed incredible bravery.
Thank you to the public for their continued support and please continue to report to us either via calling 101, reporting online or calling 999 in emergencies.’