Pensioner, 77, appears in court charged with accidentally killing his great-grandson, 6, with pellet airgun
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Pensioner, 77, appears in court charged with accidentally killing his great-grandson, 6, with pellet airgun

A PENSIONER has appeared in court in the UK to face charges over the accidental death of his six-year-old great-grandson who was fatally shot with an air rifle.

Albert Grannon, 77, is charged with one count of manslaughter and another count of the possession of a firearm without a certificate over the death of little Stanley Metcalf last year.

Stanley had been visiting his great-grandparents' home in Sproatley, East Yorkshire last June when he suffered a pellet injury to the side of his abdomen before passing away in hospital a short time later.

Police said they were treating the death as a "tragic accident involving a pellet airgun" at the time.

In a one-minute hearing at Hull Magistrates' Court on Thursday, Mr Grannon spoke only to confirm his name, address and nationality and did not enter a plea.

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The village of Sproatley in East Yorkshire (Image: Google Maps)

District Judge Fred Rutherford told the pensioner his charges were too serious to be heard at Hull Magistrates' Court and released him on unconditional bail to appear before Hull Crown Court on June 3.

Family and friends packed the public gallery for the short hearing.

An inquest into Stanley Metcalf's death previously heard that a post-mortem examination found the cause of death to be "an airgun projectile wound to the abdomen".

The coroner's inquest was told how Stanley had been visiting family on Church Lane in Sproatley on July 26, 2018 when he suffered the injury at around 4pm, before passing away at Hull Royal Infirmary around 90 minutes later.

Following the inquest, an elderly relative who asked not to be named described him as a "brainy, kind little boy" and a football-mad Hull City fan.

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The family member said the younster had a twin sister who "loved him to bits", adding: "I don't know how you're supposed to explain things like that to a six-year-old girl. I've just been in floods of tears ever since it happened."