Sheriff Poots “opened up from an upstairs bedroom” to scare away intruders – can you ever take the guns out of politics?

While the dissident non-conformist republican groups are amid a rebranding exercise, there was a reminder this morning that paramilitary groups aren’t the only ones with guns that are willing to use.

DUP Health Minister and Lagan Valley MLA Edwin Poots has admitted to firing warning shots out of a bedroom window to ward off potential intruders one night in early June. The Belfast Telegraph reports:

Police said they were investigating the incident which happened in the early hours of June 6.

Mr Poots, 47, was at home with his wife and four children, when the two intruders were spotted close to the house. They fled after he shouted a warning and fired into the air.

Responding to the story, which was published in the Belfast Telegraph, a DUP spokesman said: “Given the risk to Mr Poots and his family, a legally held shotgun was safely discharged into the air by Mr Poots from within his house to alert the intruders that their presence was known.

“The police were then called by the family and are investigating the matter.”

A PSNI spokesman confirmed they had “received a report of persons acting suspiciously in the grounds of a property in Lisburn” early on 6 June.

At least it wasn’t a legally-held rifle: shotgun pellets were unlikely to kill anyone on the way back down to earth.

Rumours that an airport-style scanner will now be fitted to the doors into the NI Executive room have not been confirmed.

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  • andnowwhat

    He could form a group called Ear-iggi

  • Jack2


  • Mister_Joe

    Hard to blame him.
    I recall a certain Mr. Fitt having to draw out his legally held firearm.

  • andnowwhat

    Edwin Poot(s)in

    (as in Vladimir)

  • Zig70

    Even the police can’t fire warning shots without extreme justification and a ton of paperwork. That seems to be the biggest deterent for legally held guns.

  • Toastedpuffin

    The potential intruders were lucky he didn’t unleash his helicopter gunships.

    Hang on….. sorry, mistaken identity.

  • Mister_Joe

    Look, what would we be saying if the headline had read, “Edwin Poots shot dead at home by suspected republican dissidents”?

  • Toastedpuffin


    True, but I think most of us will see the funny side of a government minister loosin’ off lead from his upstairs window. My granda used to do that back in the day. Could have ended up nasty one way or another, but we still fell about laughing at the story.

  • sdelaneys

    I wonder if the PSNI have seized his gun or guns as is the norm in this type of case regardless of the direction the gun was pointed.

  • Mister_Joe

    …the norm in this type of case..

    How many such cases are there, every year, say?

  • keano10


    Love that Ear-iggi quip !

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    I’d say a fair few farmers would do the same lol

  • Mister_Joe

    the future’s bright, the future’s orange,

    Of course. And if they fire a shot to scare away a fox that they hear lurking, I imagine they don’t have to fill out any forms or have their gun seized by the police for examination.

  • arsetopple

    Given the amount of thefts from farms & the current outbreak of sheep rustling going on Edwin was right to offer to smite them with his 12 bore. With 300 sheep stolen in County Antrim there must ba a lot of cheap meat about or a very large dating agency has opened to deal with the local demand. “Hey Paddy yours looks like mutton dressed as lamb.” Reply ” Now Sammy she is not that baaaaaaaaaaad”

  • Typical poor performance from Pootie, missing his targets once again.

  • sdelaneys

    Mister Joe “How many such cases are there, every year, say?”

    I have no idea but’s it more than you might think and I’m including cases where no shots were discharged. It is not that unusual for the psni to seize guns for a number of reasons including allegations by a third party such as somebody alleged to have said ‘I have a shotgun at home…” or suchlike unsubstantiated claims. I personally know 4 people who had their shotguns taken and had a lot of trouble getting them back, taking over two years in one case. The issue has even been raised at district policing meetings in Newry and Mourne. Just wondering if a ‘minister’ is treated differently.

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    ‘Typical poor performance from Pootie, missing his targets once again.’

    lol very good

  • Carsons Cat

    Nice level of condescension. You’ve surpassed your already high standards of sneering at the “ordinary folk”.