Weapons hoard caretaker escapes jail term
Sep 7 2004
A school's board of governors will decide in the next few days if a caretaker who hoarded a cache of weapons including a stun gun and machete at his home will return to his job.
Terence Batters (48), a father-of-two, said common sense had prevailed after he walked free from Birmingham Crown Court yesterday with a two-year combination order.
He had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to five charges of possessing an offensive weapon and was ordered to do 100 hours community service and pay £154 court costs.
Speaking after the case, he said he was looking forward to returning to his job at William Cowper Primary School in Chilwell Croft, Newtown. He has been suspended on full pay since June.
"I am obviously relieved and glad that common sense has prevailed," said Mr Batters who has been married for 29 years and has worked at the school for the past two-and-a-half years.
"I have never been a threat to anybody or presented a danger. The offence was never work-related, although I do regret buying the weapons."
A spokeswoman for Birmingham's local education authority last night said Batters would remain suspended until the school governors made a final decision on his job in the next few days.
The conditions of his suspension mean he cannot be in the vicinity of the school, apart from his house which is adjacent to the grounds.
Simon Rippon, prosecuting, told the court that on June 30 this year police officers raided Batters' house in the school grounds and discovered a haul of CS gas canisters stored in the study.
The raid was part of Operation Bembridge, a national blitz on weapons bought on the internet.
Officers also found flick knives, a machete and an imitation firearm in Batters' house.
Mr Rippon said that in police interviews Batters admitted buying the weapons via a French internet site.
John Attwood, defending, said Batters, a school caretaker for 15 years, kept the weapons for self defence because he was worried about his personal safety.
"He was misled into thinking he was allowed these things as long as he didn't have them in a public place."
Other then the CS gas I can go buy that at the local flea market.
Tear gas is a no no in England if I remember right.
What a joke. GBR has officially become pussified. A machete? Hell, you can buy one of those at home depot.
How the bloody blue blazes did the British empire fall so far? I'll be in the bunker loading mags.
This reminds me... my friend said he brought me back a Kukri from Napal.
Damnit... he owes me a kukri!
EDIT: That kukri, when it materializes, will bring dinner pics to a whole new level