London

Man guilty over Southwark Tube police chase shooting

A man who fired shots as he was being chased by two police officers in south London has been convicted of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life.

The Old Bailey heard Callum Hall fired at Pc Colin Hutton and Pc Vincent Turner as they chased him along crowded streets near Southwark Tube station.

Jurors saw CCTV footage showing diners dashing inside restaurants for cover.

Hall, 21, of no fixed address, claimed he did not mean to hit the officers and was cleared of attempted murder.

The court heard the officers had approached Hall on 5 August to speak to him about an allegation he had threatened a mother at gunpoint, and demanded money, in front of her young children.

Hall fled and was captured on CCTV being pursued by the officers along restaurant terraces packed with diners.

During the chase he produced a 9mm pistol and fired shots, sending people running inside shops for safety.

Giving evidence, Pc Hutton said he feared Pc Turner had been hit before diving to the ground himself at the sound of a gunshot.

Philip Bennetts, prosecuting, said there was no dispute the defendant had used a firearm but it was for jurors to decide what his intention was.

He said there were "many, many people" around in the direction in which the gun was fired and it was fortunate no-one was injured.

Hall was also convicted along with several accomplices over two violent robberies that left an estate terrorised.

Image caption Callum Hall fired at two police officers chasing him

He was found guilty with Deniz Ozdil, 20, of Walworth, south-east London, of firearm possession, unlawful wounding, and attempted aggravated burglary with a pistol and hunting knife on 28 July 2009.

A 17-year-old, who cannot be named, was cleared of attempted aggravated burglary and perverting justice in over the incident.

The teenager had earlier admitted a separate firearms charge.

Hall was also convicted over a third robbery carried out six days earlier with Anthony Babalola, 21, of Walworth.

Both were found guilty of an aggravated burglary carried out with an imitation firearm and false imprisonment.

Babalola was also convicted of two counts of intimidation.

'Dangerous criminals'

Det Sgt Paul Davis said: "These men carried out two violent robberies, led by Hall, terrorising innocent men, women and children.

"Today's verdict will be a relief to the victims and the local community who have had to suffer at the hands of these dangerous criminals."

Cory Huie, 20, of Peckham, was cleared of a single count of intimidation.

Hall, Ozdil, Babalola and the youth have all been held in custody ahead of sentencing on 20 September.

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