A 69-year-old man has been fined for failing to stop children from using an air weapon after a child was shot in the face with a shotgun.

Geoffrey Joiner, of Riding Lane in Beaconsfield, has been fined £500 after he failed to prevent children from using his air rifle.

At a hearing at Wycombe Magistrates’ Court yesterday (Wednesday), Joiner pleaded guilty to the charge against him.

The court heard how on December 21, 2021, Joiner failed to take appropriate precautions to prevent two children, who cannot be named for legal reasons, from using his firearm.

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The offence only became known to the authorities after one of the children was seriously injured when the other shot them in the face with a shotgun. This was unrelated to Joiner and the air rifle offence.

In England, it is a criminal offence for a child under the age of 18 to use an air weapon without supervision from someone aged over 21.

The court heard how on December 21, the two children took the air weapon and used it to shoot squirrels and targets on land in Forty Green.

The prosecutor added: “The reason this matter came to light is there was an incident whereby the young person received a significant injury to his face, not as a result of the air rifle but it was the result of a shotgun.”

Joiner, who is a carpenter by trade, was fined £500 and ordered to pay a further £135 in costs.

At the same hearing, Aimee Jones, 35, of Bramley Gardens in Bourne End, pleaded not guilty to the same charge – possessing an air weapon and failing to take reasonable precautions to prevent a child from having it with them.

The offence is alleged to have taken place in Forty Green on December 21, 2021.

Jones is set for a trial at Wycombe Magistrates’ Court on October 31.