Man, 71, arrested after drone pilot threatened with air gun in Cirencester

A drone pilot was threatened by a man brandishing an air gun – while photographing a property for an estate agent in Cirencester.

The fully-registered and licenced drone pilot was flying the aircraft when he was approached by a man armed with a firearm.

The suspect claimed he’d been trying to shoot the drone using the weapon – and at this point, it was not clear whether it was a live firearm or a replica.

The 33-year-old man, from Swindon, told the angry resident that he was filming an unrelated property for an estate agent, but the suspect continued to act aggressively.

The drone pilot, a 33-year-old man from Swindon approached the resident to explain he was filming a neighbouring property for an estate agent, saying: “Yeah, it was me, sir. It was me.”

The suspect responds: “I was shooting at it.”

The pilot replies “well that’s illegal” before the gunman says “well, don’t f***ing fly it over my house.”

The pilot repeats: “No, it’s totally legal for me to fly over your house, sir.”

He adds “please sir, please sir” as the suspect says: “I don’t care. I’m going to f***ing fire.

“If you bring it over my house, I will fire at it.

“You do not come over and take pictures hovering above our house.”

The victim objects: “I wasn’t sir, I was taking pictures of this house.”

The suspect then says: “You were right over our garden.

“If you do it again, I will fire at it again.

“I took three shots at it and I missed.”

The victim then says “don’t point that gun at me” to which the suspect responds

“don’t point a f***ing drone at me.”

The audio becomes unclear as he prodded the victim with the weapon and the camera begins moving before the video is cut

When he prodded his victim with the weapon, he was able to disarm him – grabbing the gun and kicking it away.

The suspect then fled the scene in his car.

Armed officers were deployed and arrested a 71-year-old man from Cirencester when he returned to the location.

He was held on suspicion of possessing a firearm with the intent to cause fear.

The officers also seized an air rifle following the incident.

Gloucestershire Police say the suspect has since been released under investigation.

A police spokesperson said: ”Police were called to reports of a person making threats with a weapon on Shepherds Way, Cirencester, at around 9.30am yesterday (Monday 22 August).

”Armed officers attended the scene and an air rifle was seized.

”A 71-year-old man from Cirencester was arrested on suspicion of possessing a firearm with the intent to cause fear. He has been released under investigation while enquiries continue.” 

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