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Former army marksman grabbed 'gun' in road rage row

By John Scott | Halesowen | Crime | Published:

A former army marksman who got out of his car armed with a ‘gun’ in a road rage row, has avoided a jail term.

Manor Lane, in Halesowen. Picture: Google

Ryan Uppal made the stupid move after his car was cut up or blocked by another vehicle at a roundabout on Manor Lane, in Lapal, Halesowen, a court heard.

The other motorist got out of their car, as did the defendant’s 27-year-old’s girlfriend and he followed fearing she might be assaulted during the confrontation on August 27 last year, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

But he took an air pistol from inside his vehicle, said Mr Neil Ahuta, prosecuting.

An alarmed witness saw the weapon and, assumed it was real so called the police who sent armed officers. Uppal, from Harvest Road, Rowley Regis, was arrested soon afterwards.

He held the unloaded gun by his side and denied raising or pointing it which was confirmed by the witness, revealed the prosecutor.

The air pistol had insufficient power to be legally regarded as a firearm and was described as an imitation handgun.

The defendant denied having it to cause fear of violence but was convicted of the offence following a trial and had been remanded on bail for a pre-sentence report.

Uppal, who was of previous good character, told the jury he had taken the gun out for target practice and left it in his car by accident.

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The defendant, who lost his coach driving job but has since found other work, was told by Judge Amjad Nawaz: “You, having been in the armed services, should have known better.

“To brandish a gun in the present time is high criminality and put yourself and the public in serious danger. However this was the mildest form of an offence of this nature, serious as it is with a 10-year maximum jail sentence, that I have come across.”

Uppal was given an 18-month community order with 200 hours of unpaid work and was ordered to pay £2,000 costs.

John Scott

By John Scott
Reporter/News Feature Writer

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