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North-east father warns spate of suspected pellet gun attacks could ‘do real damage to someone’

Gavin Elphinstone and Claire Henry with their baby. The window on the right has the hole in it from the ball bearing.
Picture by Scott Baxter.
Gavin Elphinstone and Claire Henry with their baby. The window on the right has the hole in it from the ball bearing. Picture by Scott Baxter.

A north-east father has warned a spate of late-night pellet gun attacks “could do real damage to someone” after police confirmed that up to 10 households have been targeted in recent days.

Ellon resident Gavin Elphinstone, whose window was damaged by a ball bearing fired during the night, said officers had told him it was “only a matter of time” before the culprits are identified.

Police said a number of homes and commercial properties had been targeted in the Ellon, Oldmeldrum, Hatton, Boddam and Cruden Bay areas.

In a statement the police said they were making inquiries to trace those responsible, adding that they suspect a vehicle was used to carry out the attacks in a drive-by manner.

The incidents took place between Thursday and Monday.

Mr Elphinstone, who has a three-month-old baby, said his partner Claire discovered the damage to the Craighall Lodge property on Saturday morning.

He said: “The situation could have been a lot worse as it was shot into our kitchen.

“I’ve spoken to a few people who were affected and whoever it is must know that there are children living in these houses.

“One told me their grandmother’s house was targeted as well, that’s an elderly woman that’s been affected – she doesn’t need that grief.”

Mr Eliphinstone praised the police for a quick response and said he was told the metal ball bearing recovered from his home will be tested for fingerprints.

He said: “Hopefully they can narrow down to who it is.

“I would tell whoever is doing this to grow up and stop targeting people’s houses – people don’t have the money right now to be shelling out for a new window.

“Ball bearings like that could do real damage to someone or potentially kill them.”

Sergeant Richard Barnwell from the Formartine Community Policing Team described the behaviour as “completely unacceptable” and said the incidents will be “robustly investigated”.

He added: “The properties appear to have been randomly targeted and those responsible have shown complete disregard for the impact this could have on the occupants within.

“We are appealing for members of the public who were in or travelling through the mentioned areas between last Thursday and Monday, and saw anything suspicious, to come forward.

“If you witnessed anything of this nature, or have dash-cam footage which could assist our enquiries, please get in touch.”

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