Man jailed for use of imitation firearm in Nottingham

A man who was seen pointing what appeared to be a gun during an altercation in St Ann’s has been sentenced to ten months in prison.

Mechach Preston, 28, of Lees Hill, in Nottingham appeared at Nottingham Crown Court today (Friday 22 September).

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The court heard how around 300 people had attended a Christmas event at the Afro Caribbean National Artistic Centre (ACNA) in Hungerhill Road on Monday 26 December 2016. When people started to leave at around 4.15am the following day, a dispute occurred between two groups of men which included Preston. During which, he disappeared and returned with a T-shirt covering his face and pointed an imitation handgun at the group. Around 25 people witnessed the event and were forced to run from the area, some hid behind cars fearing their life was in danger.

This disorder was captured on nearby CCTV and highlighted Preston’s involvement.

He was arrested shortly after the incident along with another man. They both pleaded not guilty to possession of an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence. However, Preston was convicted by the jury following a four-day trial.

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His co-accused, Quamai Nugent, 25, of Warton Avenue in Nottingham was found not guilty.

Detective Sergeant Simon Harrison from the Serious and Organised Crime team said: “This man caused fear and distress to a large number of people who were in the process of leaving a Christmas event. We will not tolerate this kind of behaviour, firearms incidents are taken extremely seriously and we will investigate them to the best of our ability. I’d like to thank the community in St Ann’s for their support and understanding with this investigation despite being shocked by the event.”