A 78-year-old man has pleaded guilty to shooting and killing his 6-year-old great-grandson with a pellet gun, BBC News reports.
On July 26, 2018, according to a Sky News report from the time, 6-year-old Stanley Metcalf was visiting family, including his great-grandfather Albert Grannon, in the village of Sproatley in East Yorkshire, in England. The sequence of events that took place that day remains unclear, but at some point, police were dispatched to the family’s home. There, they found the young lad with a hole in his abdomen, a wound that was delivered via Grannon’s pellet gun. Stanley was taken to a hospital and was later pronounced dead.
Authorities initially treated the death as an accident, but eventually, Grannon was arrested and charged in the boy’s death.
On Monday, Grannon pleaded guilty to manslaughter as well as to possessing an air rifle without holding a firearms certificate.
Are Pellet Guns Lethal?
Pellet guns, unlike most firearms, use compressed air to fire mushroom-shaped pellets at the target. As such, they’re generally used for controlling small rodents, such as mice, or for hunting very small game, such as squirrels and small birds. They’re also used for casual target practice and as beginner weapons for children to use, according to YourPelletGuns.com.
A horrible accident has left a little boy dead and his granddad in trouble. A pellet gun misfire has killed a 6 year old boy and some PRC style law about licensing AIR RIFLES in the UK has already destroyed granddad looking at prison time! https://t.co/ojEqK088uX
— Rex (@NorthSignal) June 10, 2019
That’s not to say that it’s safe to fire them at human beings. According to the Reiff Law Firm, tens of thousands of Americans, a large percentage of them children, are injured by BB guns and air rifles each year. In extremely rare cases, such as that of 11-year-old Dallas Barnes, shots from air guns can be fatal. Barnes died when a BB fired from a gun pierced his chest and heart.
Stanley Metcalf’s Family
Back in England, Stanley’s family is still reeling from the death of the young boy.
Rebecca Dickinson, the lead investigator in this case, noted that Stanley had a twin sister, Elsie, who is absolutely devastated at the loss of her brother.
“I can only imagine what she will feel like now and when she reaches any milestones in her life, knowing that she should be sharing them with Stanley,” said Dickinson.
As for Grannon, Dickinson has said that he has shown “no real remorse” for this crime.
“I am pleased that Albert Grannon has finally admitted his guilt and faced up to the enormity of his actions,” she said.
Meanwhile, Grannon is awaiting sentencing, and until that happens, he’s been granted conditional bail.