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Photo Exclusive: Armed Cops

Police aim gun at 15-yr-old after riots

This picture showed the dramatic moment under-pressure cops pulled a gun on an innocent teenager in the wake of the UK riots. The dramatic photo summed up the huge tension in the country following a string of public disorder across the country. We sold the photo and story to the People newspaper that ran a front page exclusive. Read the full story:

Don’t Move

THIS is the moment an armed cop yesterday held a gun over the head of a 15-year-old boy in a suburban British high street rocked by riots. The officer pointed the semi-automatic assault rifle over the lads head outside a Greggs bakery in Wythenshawe, south Manchester scene of devastating riots just four days earlier. The dramatic scene came as disgusted parents began handing their children into police around Britain for taking part in the orgy of destruction. The Wythenshawe stand-off happened just nine days after the fatal shooting of dad-of-four Mark Duggan, 29, which sparked savage looting across Britain. The boy in our exclusive picture was among a group of seven aged 11 to 15 who spent 15 minutes pinned to the floor before the gun cops made an arrest in front of more than a hundred terrified shoppers. A mum of 28 who watched with her six-year-old daughter told The People: I was absolutely petrified. You wouldn’t normally expect to see anything like this around here but then we had these riots. Last Tuesday 40 police officers in riot gear swarmed on the same town centre with batons drawn. They were involved in skirmishes with youths aged between 12 and 15 who were running at police and taunting them. Another witness of yesterday’s gun drama said: Tensions have been high since we had the trouble with the rioters.As soon as armed police arrived we thought another riot was going to break out but the police managed to keep in under control. We have heard a lot about police getting tough in the wake of the riots and this lot were zero tolerance, simple as that. Another onlooker said: There was a group of lads sitting around on their bikes in the middle of the precinct. Then I heard shouts of Armed police and Get down. It was all so fast.The boys flew on to the ground and the police had the guns close to their heads. There were three armed police and about another 10 back up officers. For the next15 minutes the lads on the ground were being searched and had names and addresses taken. The police seemed particularly interested in a bag one of them had. They tore it open but there just seemed to be boxes of Smarties and other stuff from Greggs. Eventually they got one lad about 12 in handcuffs and led him away. The others were eventually just allowed to go on their way. I heard one of them say Im never coming back down here again, I’m really embarrassed. A police spokesman said last night: Someone was observed by a passer by passing what looked like a handgun to another youth on a bike. Police officers including armed officers subsequently detained two males. A weapon recovered was subsequently discovered to be a BB gun. The two arrested are both still in custody. At first police denied they had drawn a gun against the boy but later a spokesman admitted: If the firearms officer is pointing a gun that firearms officer is entitled to do so if they feel the threat level is sufficient. That would be within protocol. Police sources said the second arrest was an adult picked up at a separate location in relation to the same incident. Wythenshawe is the place that hit notoriety when a hoodie made a mock gun gesture behind David Cameron while the Tory leader was on a walkabout. Yesterday parents led the fightback against Britain’s riot shame by shopping their own children. A judge overseeing the case of a boy of 14 shopped by his teaching assistant mum spoke of the heartbreak suffered by parents. The boy was among FIVE separate cases to emerge yesterday of police making arrests after parents turned in their children. The controversial moves won support from a string of leading national parenting organizations. In case number one the 14-year-old who cannot be named for legal reasons was frogmarched to his local police station after the stunned mother saw his photo in a newspaper report about the outrage which swept Manchester city centre last Tuesday. In court the boys shattered mum listened on in shame as his theft of gum from a looted Sainsburys supermarket was revealed. Handling the lad a referral order, the district judge said: This is heartbreaking for the parents. The judge then asked his parents to stand up in court and congratulated them on their response, saying more parents should take their responsibilities so seriously. A second Manchester lad aged 16 was made to confess by his mum after shes aw CCTV footage of him stealing three bottles of vodka from Sainsburys. The lad was given a tag and curfew after he admitted burglary. And Kyle Hobson, 21, of Droylsden, Lancs, who is accused of being part of raids on Spar and Tesco Express stores was hauled before a court after his mother saw him on Sky News. He was remanded in custody.

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