Shetland teenager loses firearms case appeal

A TEENAGER who was sentenced to three years behind bars after a firearms incident on an island has lost an appeal against the length of his sentence.

A firearms team had been flown to Shetland by helicopter from the mainland to assist armed officers based in Shetland. Picture: BBC

Samuel Barlow, 16, pled guilty to charges of pointing an air rifle and threatening to shoot police officers when he appeared at Lerwick Sheriff Court in Shetland in February.

Sentencing Barlow, Sheriff Philip Mann said he must have caused the “utmost fear and alarm” to those he confronted.

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Barlow lodged an appeal against the length of his sentence with the Criminal Appeal Court in Edinburgh.

However, judges refused his application to appeal at both stages of the sifting process.

A spokeswoman for the Judiciary of Scotland said: “Samuel Barlow, who was sentenced to three years for firearms-related offences in Lerwick, has now had his application to appeal refused at both sifts.

“His appeal therefore fails.”

In his sentencing statement, Sheriff Mann praised police whose professionalism, he said, helped prevent a fatal outcome to the incident.

He said: “Thankfully, it came to a close without bodily injury to anyone but I think that perhaps, now, you realise how close you, yourself, came to being shot and perhaps killed.

“To be in the position of deciding whether or not to deploy a weapon against another person must be a highly stressful and unenviable situation to be in, even for trained police officers.

“Thankfully, for you, the professionalism and restraint shown by those police officers averted what could easily have been a fatal outcome.”