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LOCKED UP: Stanmore gunman who opened fire after leaving Watford club jailed

 Published on: 24th July 2020   |   By: News Bulletin   |   Category: Uncategorized

A gunman who fired four shots after leaving a Watford nightclub was (Friday) jailed for seven years.

Elliot Simon, 28, had initially acted a peacemaker during a row with three men whose car had blocked their way in a service road off Beechen Grove.

But during the row Simon, from Stanmore, pulled out a small pistol and fired, two of the bullets hitting the car, St Albans Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Charles Evans said the driver of the silver Corsa had been to Pryzm nightclub with two friends on the night of December 7 to 8 2018.

They left after 3am and after driving away for a short distance, the man stopped the car and put his hazard lights on while he searched for his phone.

Simon and Raydun Celestine, 25 and also from Stanmore, left same club with female friends at around the same time.  Celestine drove them away in a Chevrolet that was blocked by the Corsa.

Mr Evans said: “Mr Celestine got out and shouted and swore. He threatened to rob him (the driver) 

“Mr Simon got out of the car and approached the victim and sought to calm things down. Mr Celestine was maintaining his aggression and Mr Simon tried to pull him back. He told him to get in the car and leave.”

But the prosecutor said Simon, who had taken drink and drugs, then pulled out a small black handgun. He fired the gun once and then for a second time near the driver’s feet.

The two men in the victim’s car ran off. As the driver got in the car and left, Simon fired twice. One bullet was later found lodged in the driver’s seat.

Simon was arrested on December 11 and Celestine went to the police on December 17,  knowing he was wanted.

Simon of Ruth Close, Stanmore appeared for sentence, having pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and possession of cocaine. He was in breach of a suspended sentence for possessing cannabis. In 2011 he was jailed for 30 months for five robberies.

Celestine of Chandos Crescent, Stanmore pleaded guilty to affray. He had previous convictions for going equipped and possessing cannabis.

Jailing Simon, Judge Philip Grey said: “Far too many people In this country have been killed or seriously injured by guns.

“This was a real gun with real bullets. Your intention was to terrify that man and his friends

“The bullet recovered from the driver’s seat was a matter of inches from hitting the victim. You came within a very short distance from taking a man’s life.”

The judge sentenced Simon to an 18-month community order with a condition that he carries out 120 hours’ unpaid work and attends 30 rehabilitation activity day.

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