An SDLP councillor has fired a number of shots to protect himself from a gang of men who had confronted him in County Antrim.
Both Mr O'Connor and his mother were treated for shock
Danny O'Connor said he used the gun because he feared for his life.
The incident happened after the gang threw a tar-like substance over his mother's car in Larne.
It took place outside their house on Churchill Road at about 0045 GMT on Monday.
The O'Connor family have been attacked a number of times in the past by loyalist paramilitaries.
The gang ran off after the latest attack, but returned to confront Mr O'Connor a short time later.
He then fired four shots into the air from a legally held gun.
No members of the gang, who ran off, were injured.
Both Mr O'Connor and his mother were treated for shock.
He said: "A group of men had poured tar-type stuff over my mother's car," he said.
"I heard the noise out the front, but by the time I had put the cameras on they were running away.
"I went outside and had a look around and I was waiting on the police to come.
"I saw two figures on the camera and thought it was the police. By the time I went out, I realised that it wasn't the police and that I was in a bit of danger.
"There was one fella who looked to be in the act of throwing something - I don't know if it was a stone or a pipe bomb - but at the time when you have to react to something like that everything just seems to happen instantaneously.
"I was really scared, because I thought it might have been a pipe bomb because my late brother had been pipe bombed.
"I fired four quick shots over the top of their heads - they then ran away. I was really afraid for my life, to be honest with you."