Man who threatened bailiffs and police with gun in south-east London jailed

Richard Todd  (Met Police)
Richard Todd (Met Police)

A man has been jailed after threatening bailiffs and police officers with a loaded handgun in south-east London.

Richard Todd, 52, has been sentenced to five years in prison following the “terrifying” incident, which happened when two county court bailiffs visited his home in Foxberry Road, Brockley, on February 16.

They arrived to execute a repossession of property warrant, but after gaining entry to the building were confronted by Todd who was holding a handgun.

They left the property and called the police.

Firearms officers were scrambled to the scene, where they too were met by Todd who pointed the gun at them.

The handgun Todd used to threaten the bailiffs and officers (Met Police)
The handgun Todd used to threaten the bailiffs and officers (Met Police)

The officers spoke with him, and after an “intense standoff” lasting around 20 minutes, he put the gun down and was quickly arrested.

Officers searched his home and found further ammunition - 25 bulleted cartridges and 24 shotgun shells - along with a bulletproof vest.

The handgun was sent for forensic examination and was found to be a revolver style air pistol that had been converted to a viable lethal firearm. It was loaded with six rounds of live ammunition.

He was charged two days later and remanded in custody.

Todd was sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court on December 19 to five years’ imprisonment.

He had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to two counts of possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence, possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of ammunition without a certificate.

Some of the ammunition found at the scene (Met Police)
Some of the ammunition found at the scene (Met Police)

Detective Constable Theo Green, from the South East Command Unit, said: “No one expects to have a gun pointed at them whilst they’re going about their job. This must have been a truly terrifying experience for the two bailiffs.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to praise my colleagues in the Firearms Command who responded that day. The composure they showed, and their ability to talk a gunman down, shows true professionalism. The outcome of that day could have been much different.”

Detective Chief Superintendent Donna Smith, of the Met’s Firearm Command, added: “This incident demonstrates the bravery and professionalism of our firearms officers, who confront incidents like this on a daily basis to protect the public and unarmed officers.

“This was one of the approximately 4,000 spontaneous firearms incidents we responded to over the last 12 months and shows how our officers will use their communication skills to de-escalate and conclude an incident safely. I am extremely proud of their response that day.”