Mad bulls

2, PROSPECT CLOSE,
EWLOE,
FLINTSHIRE, CH 3RL.
 
6th June 2008.

Dear Editor,

The slain Mold Bullock and ricocheting bullet. November 2007.
The shooting of the Brazilian electrician three years ago and the death of a police officer in Manchester during a training exercise recently are both more serious than the bullock incident. However, when ever police deploy firearms the public must be assured that officers are capable of handling weapons safely and the public is not put at risk. I am aware that all attempts by your newspaper to call the chief constable to account has failed other than to inform you that the matter ahs been investigated. (Full Stop!)
But it has been alleged that the animal had been calmed and was with other beasts in a field and yet the creature was killed and another bullet that slammed through a window and into the wall of a near by office. The office could have been occupied and a person as well as a animal could have become victims of the North Wales Firearms Unit. Is it true that the owner of the officer was persuaded not to make a formal complaint? Surely not.!
Your Chronicle is right in pressing for an explanation. Having once had responsibility for training, including weapons when I was a Merseyside ACC, great care was taken over the calibre of officers who received regular training and regularly assessed for personal attributes such as absence through sickness and other possibly tell tale clues into an officer’s ongoing suitability to discharge weapons. Had an incident such as the Mold fiasco occurred, a full scale enquiry would have taken place and the officer relieved from firearms duty until the facts were known.
Mr Brunstrom should answer the following questions as a matter of urgency and place them in the public domain. Any refuse should be seen as a serious dereliction of duty. Who gave the order to allow weapons to be discharged and why were firearms officers deployed in the first place? The animal was no longer a threat. Why do the police continue to describe the animal as a bull rather than a bullock?
Did the Police Authority call for a full report and was one produced?
Was there a proper investigation, if so, what were the terms of reference and the rank of the investigation officer.
Was the officer from North Wales? (It is probably too much to expect that an officer from a neighbouring force would have been appointed).
How many shots were fired? I presume the first one missed the animal and amazingly then ricocheted across soft ground into the back wall of an office? Perhaps several bullets were fired? We need to know. I know nothing of the trajectory behaviour of ballistic weaponry but the ricochet excuse seems a very odd explanation to me. Could the chief constable advice us on the finer details of bullets ricochet characteristics and what training is utilised to prevent it happening in the first place? Employing officer capable of hitting a target first time would be a start!
It beggars belief that this worrying and potentially life threatening incident has been hushed up. The complacency shown by the chief constable so far is truly alarming. The opportunity now presents itself to offer a less arrogant and more open and forth-coming attitude towards the Chester chronicle and its readers. I trust Mr Brunstrom will not “blank” you again Editor: if so perhaps that is all his Firearms Team should be entrusted to use.
Yours truly, Alison Halford. Cllr. Ewloe Ward.

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