Video report by ITV News Correspondent Ben Chapman
A pensioner jailed for three years for shooting dead his six-year-old great-grandson with an air rifle has “never once said sorry to us”, the boy’s mother today told a judge.
Albert Grannon pleaded guilty to manslaughter at Sheffield Crown Court after a pellet hit Stanley Metcalf at his home in Sproatley, East Yorkshire in July last year.
During emotional scenes in court, Stanley’s mother Jenny Dees described how Grannon – her grandfather – had never apologised and would be thinking he had been “unfairly treated”.
Ms Dees told the packed courtroom that she was “really angry” because she believed the defendant would be thinking it was an accident, and “what is all the fuss about and why on earth has he been brought to court”.
She said: “Granddad surely has some inkling of some of the pain we are going through, as he has lost a son himself, but never once has he said sorry to us.”
The court was told how on the day of the shooting, Grannon had got the gun out during a family gathering. It was fully loaded, with the safety catch off, as he discharged the .22 calibre weapon inside his home "to clear it out".
Stanley was standing just a couple of feet away, and the pellet hit him in the abdomen.
Moments after being hit by the air rifle pellet, Stanley said: "You’ve shot me Grandad".
He died an hour and a half later in hospital.
The court was told that Albert Grannon’s air rifle had been modified to make it more powerful. It needed a licence but Grannon had chosen not to apply for one.
ITV News reporter Ben Chapman was in the court as Grannon was sentenced.
He tweeted Stanley's mother, Jennifer Dees, who said in a victim impact statement her son was a "lovely little boy with a wicked sense of humour who always made us laugh".
She criticised the "stupidity and lack of forethought" of his great grandfather.
She added: "Never once has he said sorry to us".
The six-year-old's father, Andrew, told the court in a victim impact statement he has lost his "best friend and shadow".
He asked Albert Grannon directly: "Why didn't you check that gun, why did you point it at Stanley. Why did you take my little boy away?"
In an emotional statement outside the court following sentencing, Stanley's mother called for changes to gun licencing laws to prevent over families going through a similar tragedy.
She said: "It doesn't matter about the length of the prison sentence, it could have been three years or 10 years.
"It's the fact that now someone has been held responsible for the death of our son.
"Ultimately this will never heal a pain of losing Stanley, which I would only be healed by having Stanley with me now.
"This will take some time now to heal as a family, but moving forward I hope we can look into changing the licencing laws around owning and licencing of firearms so nobody has to go through what we have gone through today."
The judge told Grannon: "You ended a young life and you brought lifelong grief and misery to his parents and to the whole of his family."
He said: "What you did was obviously a very dangerous thing to do. Why on Earth did you do it?"
The court heard how Stanley's extended family had been split by the incident. Some relatives sat in the court itself while others were in the overhanging public gallery.
Grannon showed no emotion as he stood to be sentenced.
As he was taken down, one woman shouted from the balcony: "Love you Dad."