MP backs decision on farm shooting
The decision not to press charges against a couple who used a gun to defend their home from intruders has been welcomed by their representative in Parliament.
Government minister Alan Duncan said he was delighted that the Crown Prosecution Service had "seen sense" by deciding to not take criminal action against Andy and Tracey Ferrie.
The husband and wife were arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm after a legally-owned shotgun was fired during a break-in at their isolated rural home on Sunday.
They were released on police bail on Tuesday as police announced that two men had been charged with burgling the property in Welby, Leicestershire.
After studying evidence gathered by police, senior prosecutors announced they believed Mr and Mrs Ferrie had acted in reasonable self-defence during the incident and would not face charges.
Judith Walker, the Chief Crown Prosecutor for the East Midlands, said: "Looking at the evidence, it is clear to me that Mr and Mrs Ferrie did what they believed was necessary to protect themselves, and their home, from intruders."
The decision came after Mr Duncan, MP for Rutland and Melton MP, said the real crime would be if the couple were prosecuted for defending their home.
After the announcement he said: "I'm delighted the CPS has seen sense and has exonerated them.The law has worked and so has the system. The focus must be on the burglars and not the victims. My constituents can hold their heads high."
Earlier in the day CPS officials has visited the couple's property near Melton Mowbray to decide whether the accounts given by Mr and Mrs Ferrie were consistent with other evidence of what happened. Ms Walker added: "I am satisfied that this is a case where householders, faced with intruders in frightening circumstances, acted in reasonable self-defence. "
The announcement came hours after two men appeared at Loughborough Magistrates' Court charged with burglary.
Daniel Mansell, 33, from Leicester, pleaded guilty to the offence and was remanded in custody to be sentenced at Leicester Crown Court on September 25.
Joshua O'Gorman, 27, who is also charged with burglary, gave no indication of plea and was remanded in custody to reappear before magistrates on September 14.