Should people be banned from keeping firearms in their homes?
HEARTBROKEN brothers say their family has been left “numb” after four relatives were gunned down in a New Year’s Day massacre.
Gunman Michael Atherton was a firearms enthusiast who was allowed to own six guns despite having his licence reviewed in 2008 after he threatened to harm himself.
The body of the 42-year-old taxi driver, who was said to be depressed, was found near those of three women in the downstairs of his small semi-detached house in Greenside Avenue, Horden.
An independent investigation will take place into why Mr Atherton was allowed to own guns after Durham Constabulary made a voluntary referral to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) as the force had “minor contact” with the family in the past.
Reports in 2008 said Mr Atherton, who is thought to have been a member of a gun club, had made threats to self-harm but was allowed to carry on owning weapons.
Today we ask: Should people be banned from keeping firearms in their homes?