Police: Tell us what you know about guns

Halton McCollin snr is supporting GMP's week-long gun appeal
Halton McCollin snr is supporting GMP's week-long gun appeal

Police chiefs are urging anyone with information on gun and gang activity to speak to them confidentially and anonymously.

They have made their urgent plea as part of a firearms week of action which aims to raise the awareness of violent crime and encourage people to come forward.

The campaign which begins today, is being supported by the father of Halton McCollin who was gunned down in January 2008.

Halton, 20, was shot in the back of the head as he ran from gunmen inside a takeaway in Stretford.

Halton’s killer has never been caught and a £50,000 reward remains available for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the gunman.

Nine years later, Halton’s father is supporting Greater Manchester Police’s mission to get guns off the streets and appealing to anybody with information on his son’s murder to come forward.

During the week of action, officers will be visiting local gun clubs and licenced firearms holders and warning them to be vigilant and keep their guns secure to reduce the chances of them falling into the wrong hands.

Officers will also be doing talks in Wigan schools and working with youth offending teams to raise awareness of the dangers of guns.

Detective Chief Superintendent Mary Doyle from the Serious Crime Division said: “Guns in the wrong hands can have devastating consequences and we need the public to break the silence and help us to get firearms off the street.

“As part of our week of action we are appealing directly to the public to do the right thing and talk to us about illegal guns. One call could be all it takes to stop another family going through the pain and heartache that Halton’s loved ones have endured.

“Illegal guns only help gangs and terrorists but with your information, we can prevent them from falling into dangerous hands and causing further misery.

“I understand it’s not easy to come forward to the police, which is why we’re encouraging people to call Crimestoppers instead. They won’t ask for your name, only your information.”

Halton McCollin Snr, said: “It’s been nine years since Halton was taken away from us but in many ways, it feels like only yesterday.

“It wasn’t just one victim that night, Halton’s death has affected all of us and there isn’t a day that goes by when his family and friends don’t miss him or think about him.

“I support Greater Manchester Police’s campaign because it could save a life. You should be able to walk into a takeaway or restaurant without fear of losing your life and somebody somewhere knows who is carrying out these atrocities.

“We’ll never give up trying to find Halton’s killer and I appeal to anybody who knows anything to come forward so that we can all live in peace.”

Greater Manchester Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd said: “Please, do the right thing. If you know anything, have seen anything, then come forward. By taking that one step, your actions could mean fewer families destroyed by the loss of a loved one; fewer communities torn apart by the callous actions of criminal gangs; and fewer innocents caught in the brutal crossfire. You don’t have to give your name and your information could save lives.”

To pass on information anonymously to the police about Halton’s murder or gun crime in general, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Alternatively, call Greater Manchester Police on 101. In an emergency, where there is an immediate threat to life, please dial 999