?After an hour of shooting, a woman approached us. She abused us verbally, claiming shooting was cruel and threatened to call the police and the RSPCA,? Kenneth told Shooting Times magazine.

Twenty minutes later, a police helicopter and 7 armed response vehicles arrived at the remote barley field after the woman lied to the police saying she had been threatened by two men with firearms.

?Despite reasoning with the police, we were arrested and taken to Carlton police station, where our fingerprints, DNA and photos were taken. We were then locked in a cell for 2 hours while the woman was interviewed. She eventually admitted that she had lied and we were released without charge,? said Kenneth.

Under section 64 of the 1984 Police and Criminal Evidence Act, the DNA of Kenneth and Mark will now be retained on police records indefinitely.

?We feel completely helpless. We are furious about how we were treated and have been told that the woman can only be fined a maximum of £80 for wasting police time,? said Mark.

Solicitor Jamie Foster, of Somerset-based firm Clarke Willmott, specialises in defending fieldsports enthusiasts.

He said: ?I sympathise with Mr Davis and his son. I think their case shows how irresponsible some of the anti-shooting community are prepared to be in getting their message across.?

Mr Foster added there is a case for prosecuting someone who wastes police time.

?I also think there is a case for naming and shaming the individual involved. After all, she potentially put the lives of both the shooters and the police in danger as a result of her allegation.?

According to Mr Foster, Kenneth and Mark could sue the woman, but they would have to fund the case themselves.

?We do not know whether the woman involved has any assets, and whether the two men would be able to recover their costs, but they may wish to take such an action as a matter of principle.?

Shooting groups have said this case demonstrates why it is important to support the Campaign for Common Sense.

?The Countryside Alliance (CA) supports Shooting Times? excellent campaign,? said the CA?s Jill Grieve. ?With incidents such as this, members of the law-abiding shooting community may in future feel they have no option other than to take legal action. Shooters want to maintain good relations with the police, but equally no-one carrying out legitimate shooting should have to go through what the Davises have suffered in this case.?

A spokesman for the National Gamekeepers? Organisation agreed. ?Shooting Times has made a good job of pulling the various accounts of police incompetence together into a campaign. Bad practice and misunderstandings are the exception rather than the rule, but they still need addressing. Nobody, including the police, likes to be put in the position of looking a fool, so there is every chance that with the right educational work the outstanding problems can be solved.?

BASC has also said it supports the campaign.

BASC senior firearms officer, Mike Eveleigh, said: ?The police must take allegations of making threats to kill very seriously, so the fact they sent an armed team to the scene is not surprising. We are currently rewriting our Guide to Shooting for police forces, which will hopefully continue to be useful to them when they train their officers.?

Responding to the incident, a Nottinghamshire police spokesman told Shooting Times: ?If people are planning to go shooting, we would advise them to notify police when and where they are going. This will assist officers in assessing any situation or risk should an incident be reported in that area.?

Let us know what you think about this!

  • Tim Foster

    Four years ago I was in the same position, after shouting at my neighbour for having a firework display at 2.30am on a Sunday morning he phoned the police and told them I had threatened to shoot him, first with a rifle and then with a shotgun.
    I was arrested by armed officers, cuffed and locked up for twelve hours before seeing the duty solicitor.
    The contents of my gun cabinet were taken including such items as gunlights, thread protectors and even a tube of my sons BB`s.
    The CPS eventually dropped the case through lack of evidence, and three months after the event I got my guns back, and not in the condition they were taken!
    The cost to me was a replacement scope, a few hours cleanig grit and sand from the actions of my guns, and a great deal of stress for myself and my wife.
    The police dealt with the situation in the profesional way I would expect in a terrorist attack but alas they no longer use the common sense to see that maybe the unarmed man they have just woken up at 5am is not the nutter they were expecting!
    With regard to phoning the police to notify them of your shooting location! After five phone calls and a lot of confusion I eventually got hold of the officer I needed to notify him of a lamping forray on my shoot, only for him to burst into a lecture on how it is the law to notify them if going out lamping giving times and dates! I tried unsuccesfully to get enough words in to explain that was the reason we were having the conversation, I`m not in the habit of being spoken to like a naughty schoolboy so I hung up and have never since notified re a lamping outing.
    My thanks to the BASC for good advise and support don`t think about joining DO IT.

  • Jose

    This also highlights issues with regard to the UK’s DNA handling laws.

  • darren

    one problem with phoning the police before you go shooting
    my local police station is in use 24h but closes it’s doors at 5pm and all phone calls are transfered to the station in the next town 15 miles away so if you phone them to say you are going out shooting the message would not reach my local station until the the next day also as the Pest controller, Graham Simmonds was told by police there was a shift change between the time he phoned and the time he went shooting the message did not get passed on, you would think they would want time to put it in there system so when someone phones them they can “yes we know they are there they have permission to be there” that way they won’t wast time and money sending 20 police 3 dogs and a helicopter to arrest someone who is not committing an offense and if they do respond it should dealt with at the seen if possible not arrest first confiscate guns handcuff take to station take fingerprint take dna take photo then ask questions, seems to me they just want to test the officers without the risk of being shot, there is a lot of countryside in the uk and a lot of people are allowed to be there with guns legally, why should those people be treated the same a some idiot ruining up and down the street waving a gun around and scareing pedestrians, the police need to be trained better and soon as it is getting out of hand

  • Ian

    BASC should fund a private prosecution of this stupid woman. Send a clear message to the antis before use of this misguided and dangerous tactic spreads.

  • Dan Warry

    What on earth is going on in this country ?? That horrible woman should be made to pay for cost of the Police operation, not £80 quid !!! 7 armed response units, 2 officers per car plus 2 or 3 in the chopper ??
    All those units, I am sure, would have cost the tax payer (Thee & I) a princely sum !! NO NO NO, Sorry Madame, you have the right to remain silent and you now owe £8500 plus court costs at £2000 + 140 hours of community service.
    £80 would hardly cover the cost of 1 Doughnut, jammy or otherwise, for each Police officer involved that day. Nor would it pay for all the Toner,Ink and paper used !! What about the Carbon footprint?? Am I wrong ??

  • keith

    It’s easy to see where the ordinary officer would have a problem, but a fully trained fire arms unit should be fully aware and fully understand situations like these, they should also be in a better position to difuse and sort out these problems without it getting silly. To lie and waste police time in this way should carry a more severe penalty say a fine of £1000 minimum. Any one found not to have commited any crime should also buy law be able to request the destruction of any dna evidence, or is that to help big brother get another foot hold in our society

  • Buster

    The Notts police have no right to request that people going about their lawful business , ie shooting legally ,notify them.
    Frankly , its the thin end of the wedge, as notifying them will then become requiring their permission.
    There is an enourmous problem with illegally held firearms, especially handguns , in the cities like Nottingham.The police should concentrate o eradicating that sort of crime rather than harassing legitimate shooters because they are too badly trained to know or care what the difference is between the two.

  • Jack

    I’m speechless!!

  • Mike Hemingway

    If this woman has made a false statement to Police, and it would have appeared that she has in this case, it would be appropiate for the preamble on the top of the MG11 to be enforced, with a proper follow up. The warning is specific, regarding knowingly making false statements to police.

  • Phil howe

    An absolute discrace the way they where treated, especially that innocent prople have there DNA stored by the Police. I do have to say for the sake of a 5min phone call to the police could prevent this. I always call the police ehwn i go out day or night.