...By Adetayo Ajala for TDPel Media.
Michael Edwards, a 72-year-old man who threatened a drone pilot with a gun, has avoided jail time.
The incident occurred when Edwards suspected the drone pilot was spying on his wife sunbathing in their garden.
A video caught Edwards confronting the man, waving a black realistic-looking pistol at him.
The victim, Daine Gooden, was commissioned by an estate agent to take aerial photographs of a neighbouring building.
Mr Gooden tried to explain why he was flying the drone, but Edwards refused to accept his explanation and repeatedly told him not to fly it near his house.
Edwards took three shots at the drone as it hovered in the sky above.
Mr Gooden wrestled with the gunman to disarm him and kicked the weapon away, fearing for his safety and those around him.
Edwards collected the gun and ran back into his house.
Police were called to the scene, and armed officers arrested the defendant.
Edwards pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm, namely a Huntington G10 air pistol, in a hearing on March 30.
He was back in court for sentencing on Friday, April 28, and was given a curfew and ordered to wear a tag.
Edwards was also ordered to pay compensation to Mr Gooden, who was fully registered with the Civil Aviation Authority as required.
Edwards must pay £3,000 in compensation to Mr Gooden, including £2,000 for the damaged drone and loss of earnings, and £1,000 for the distress caused.
During the hearing, it was revealed that Edwards bought the air pistol around 20 years ago at a car boot sale and uses it to fire warning shots at foxes when they come into his garden.
The court also heard that Mr Gooden’s activity was “perfectly lawful,” and Edwards caused irreparable damage to the device worth around £1,300.
A neighbour, Katherine Teague, claimed that Edwards called Mr Gooden a “pussycat” and repeatedly mocked him as he called 999.