Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

Gunman jailed after being shot by armed police outside family home

Duane Thomas was wearing boxer shorts when he was blasted in the shoulder.

Duane Thomas has been jailed (West Midlands Police/PA)
Duane Thomas has been jailed (West Midlands Police/PA)

A convicted robber who was shot by police after fleeing from a raid with a pistol while wearing only his underpants, has been jailed for six years and four months.

Duane Thomas was carrying a fully loaded six-cylinder revolver when he was shot in the shoulder at 5am, after “bursting” out of a window in an apparent bid to hide the weapon, Birmingham Crown Court was told.

The 30-year-old, of Shepherds Gardens, Edgbaston, appeared in the dock wearing a sling and is facing further operations six months after being gunned down.

Prosecutor Peter Arnold told the court Thomas had been released from a ten-year sentence for robbery about 18 months before police raided his family home on October 2 last year.

Officers were executing a warrant related to allegations that Thomas’s brother may be in possession of a firearm.

Mr Arnold told the court: “Entry was forced through the front door and inevitably officers went to the rear of the premises.

“The officers at the rear saw the defendant bursting out of a window, down to the ground, and then emerging from behind a wall or fence.

“He had in his hand a pistol. The officers were fearful that he was going to point it at them and fire it.

“One of the officers fired one shot which penetrated the defendant’s right shoulder and disabled him.”

A .41-calibre Colt handgun and a sock containing three rounds of ammunition were found at the scene, which Thomas claimed he had wanted to “remove” from the house so no-one was hurt.

Defence counsel Liam Loughlin told the court: “He had run out of the house in only his underpants. He has numerous pains and he has had numerous operations on his shoulder.

“He continues to suffer from flashbacks and nightmares – after all, he was shot, which is traumatic for anybody.”

Thomas pleaded guilty last month to possession of a firearm and ammunition.

Judge Peter Carr, passing sentence on Monday, told Thomas: “It may well be that the firearm was not yours. I accept entirely that it was not pointed at the officers.”

But the judge added that Thomas had wanted to remove the firearm and if successful could have made it available to whoever wanted to use it for a future criminal purpose.

“A substantial custodial sentence is called for,” Judge Carr said. “You ran out of the property with what was in fact a loaded revolver and ammunition.”

PA

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph