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Police urge public to surrender firearms and ammunition

Surrey and Sussex Police are encouraging members of the public to surrender unwanted firearms and ammunition so they can be disposed of safely and avoid risks of becoming involved in criminality.

New legislation that came into effect on July 14 increased the maximum jail term for illegal gun possession from 10 years to life. This now includes anyone who is storing a weapon for someone else. It also includes antique firearms due to the fact that obsolete weapons can be made viable by criminals with ballistics knowledge.

Chief Superintendent Paul Morrison, the head of operations command across Surrey and Sussex Police, said:

Gun crime in the UK has continued to fall year on year for the last ten years but we are not complacent. We must do all we can to ensure that firearms do not fall into the hands of criminals and the public can help us.

People may have firearms or ammunition that belong to other people, who have inherited them or who might have items they have overlooked or forgotten.

We would encourage people to check their attics, sheds and cupboards and hand weapons in. A firearm might not be a danger in your hands but if it was stolen by a burglar and passed to other criminals it could put people's lives in danger.

– Paul Morrison

The nationwide operation is being co-ordinated by the National Ballistics Intelligence Service, which analyses guns and ballistic material for police forces across the UK, and starts from Monday, November 10, until Friday, November 21 November.

Anyone with information about the possession of an illegal firearm or criminal activity related to weapons, can report online at or call 101.

Reports of man approaching boys in Horsham

Police have been made aware of two reports of a man either following boys or asking them to enter a vehicle in the last few weeks in the south of the Horsham district.

Sussex Police are investigating the incidents, which occurred in Link Lane, Pulborough, and in Church Street, West Chiltington, to establish whether they are linked and whether or not criminal offences have been committed.

Of particular interest is the description of a vehicle that has been given - an older, Land Rover-style green 4x4.

Chief Inspector Howard Hodges, Sussex Police's Horsham district commander, said:

At this stage I would like to provide reassurance to the wider public of Horsham that we are taking these matters seriously and working with partners - including local schools - to understand them fully. There have been no further reports for more than two weeks but we will not be complacent.

There is no cause for alarm at this stage and I would like to ask the public to be vigilant and to report any concerns that they may have - or previously unreported incidents.

– Howard Hodges

People can contact Sussex Police either via 101, 999 in an emergency, online, or confidentially via Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 quoting Operation Block.

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Sussex and Surrey Police launch gun amnesty

Sussex Police urge "Give up your guns and ammunition" Credit: ITV news

Give us your guns and ammunition. That's the appeal from Sussex and Surrey police. The force is asking people in the county to surrender their firearms during a two week campaign (Monday 10th November - Friday 21st November) so that they can be disposed of safely.

New legislation that came into effect on July 14 increased the maximum jail term for illegal gun possession from 10 years to life. This now includes anyone who is storing a weapon for someone else. It also includes antique firearms due to the fact that obsolete weapons can be made viable by criminals with ballistics knowledge.

Police believe many gun owners may not realise the weapons they have could be illegal or the danger they pose if they fall into the wrong hands. During the two week period, those surrendering firearms will not be prosecuted for offences of possessing them illegally. However each weapon may be analysed to determine if it has been used in crime.

Chief Superintendent Paul Morrison, the head of operations command across both forces, said: "Gun crime in the UK has continued to fall for the last ten years but we are not complacent. We do all we can to ensure that firearms do not fall into the hands of criminals and the public can help us. People may have firearms or ammunition that belong to other people, who have inherited them or who might have items they have overlooked or forgotten".

The surrender is part of a nationwide operation being co-ordinated by the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS), which analyses guns and ballistic material for police forces across the UK.

Sussex Police officers investigated over handling of reported assault by Jimmy Savile

The IPCC is independently investigating the conduct of Sussex Police detectives over their handling of a reported indecent assault carried out by Jimmy Savile in 1970.

Notices have been served on four serving police officers to advise them they are subject to the investigation. Two of the officers, a detective sergeant and detective constable, who visited the woman over the alleged sexual offence soon after she contacted the force in March 2008, have been served with gross misconduct notices.

The two other officers, a detective chief inspector and detective inspector, who had supervisory roles, have received misconduct notices.

IPCC deputy chair, Sarah Green, who is overseeing Savile investigations, said: "The investigation is examining interactions between Sussex Police officers and the victim and whether all lines of enquiry were properly pursued.”

IPCC investigators have taken a statement from the woman who reported the assault and expect to interview the four officers soon. A number of Sussex Police policy documents are being examined.

The IPCC directed Sussex Police to refer the conduct of two of the officers late last year.

Fatal shooting: Picture of 7 year old Mary Shipstone

Mary Shipstone was 7 Credit: Sussex Police

Mary Shipstone was seven and lived in Spring Hill, Northiam, with her mother and brother.

Trained police officers and hospital staff are currently supporting the family through their terrible ordeal.

Mary was shot shortly before 4pm on Thursday outside her home by a man in a car parked on a driveway next to her home. She was taken to King's College Hospital in London but sadly died at 2.56pm today

Seven year old girl, shot by her father, has died

The seven-year-old girl, believed to have been shot in the head by her father, has died in hospital.

Sussex police have named the little girl as Mary Shipstone.

Her father Yasser Alromisse, appears to have killed himself.

He turned up at his ex-partner's house in Spring Hill, Northiam, near Rye, East Sussex, at about 4pm yesterday before opening fire from a car parked on a driveway next to her home.

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School is "praying" for 7-year-old pupil who was shot in head

The seven-year-old girl, shot in the head, was a pupil at Beckley Church of England Primary School in Rye.

The school has issued the following statement: "We have received confirmation that the child who was shot is a pupil at our school.

"This is a dreadfully sad and shocking incident and the whole school community are praying for her and her family."

Shot girl "we probably need to prepare ourselves for bad news"

Chief Supt Neil Honnor, of Sussex Police, said that "we probably need to prepare ourselves for bad news" in relation to the young girl's condition.

He told BBC Radio Sussex: "She's still alive, but gravely, gravely ill and our hopes are with her but in many ways we probably need to prepare ourselves for bad news.

"She's in the care of experts but is very, very unwell."

He declined to comment on reports that the man had turned the gun on himself but said it was a "hypothesis that we are working with".

And he said the shooting was believed to have been connected to the girl, describing it as a "domestic" related incident.

Explaining how the events unfolded, he went on: "As the officers got there, a young girl of six years old had been shot and was gravely ill.

"Some distance away but in Northiam in the Spring Hill area we then found a vehicle that we believe was involved in the shooting.

"We had to secure the vehicle with the containment and that was where members of the public were asked to stay inside their homes while we ensured the area was safe.

"Some short time after we managed to secure entry to that vehicle and found a man inside who was deceased and we were able to secure the area."

The area was still a crime scene with some cordons in place as officers sought to "unpick" the circumstances that led up to the shooting.

Efforts were under way to explain to children at the girl's school's what had happened, Mr Honnor added.

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