Wales

Police 'justified' shooting crossbow man in Llanelli

Robert Samuel Image copyright Dyfed Powys Police
Image caption Robert Samuel was jailed for two years for making threats to kill with an offensive weapon

Armed police who fired plastic bullets into a man brandishing a crossbow have been praised.

Dyfed Powys Police was called to Marine Street, Llanelli on 26 March when a man rang the force making threats to kill officers.

Robert Samuel, 27, of Heol Bryngwili, Cross Hands, was shot twice with baton rounds and later jailed for two years.

An Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) investigation found the officers acted "professionally".

A South Wales Police officer, who was part of the joint firearms unit, said he "feared for his life" when Samuel approached with the weapon.

Officers tried to persuade Samuel to drop the crossbow for 15 minutes but shot him twice, in the front and back of his torso, after he refused.

He was taken to hospital with a broken wrist and arrested.

Image caption The joint firearms unit was deployed to Marine Street, Llanelli, following the threats to kill

IOPC director for Wales, Catrin Evans, said: "Police officers are always expected to use the least amount of force necessary to achieve their aim and in this case, they successfully gained control of the situation through the use of a less lethal weapon. 

"The officers showed real concern for the man's welfare in a challenging situation, where one of the officers said he feared for his life.

"It is clear from the evidence we gathered that their use of force was justified."

Samuel was sentenced to two years at Swansea Crown Court after he pleaded guilty to making threats to kills, making threats with an offensive weapon and possession of Class B drugs.

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