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Last Updated: Saturday, 5 March, 2005, 07:16 GMT
Arrest over toddler airgun death
Andrew Morton
Andrew's family says he is "now with angels"
A man has been arrested over the death of a two-year-old boy who was shot in the head with an airgun pellet.

Andrew Morton was hit as he went to buy chips with his brother in Glasgow on Wednesday. He died on Friday.

A spokesman for Strathclyde Police said a 27-year-old man has been arrested and is presently detained by police.

He said the unnamed man is expected to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court on Monday and a report will be submitted to the procurator fiscal.

'With the angels'

The toddler's family, who are understood to have agreed to turn off his life support machine on Friday, issued a statement saying: "Andrew is now with angels."

The statement, which was read by family friend Isabella Bendoris, said: "The family is absolutely devastated by the tragic loss of little Andrew.

"He was so loved by everyone. He will be desperately missed by all his family and friends.

"We would like to thank the police and the firemen who helped him, and the many friends and family who rallied round us at this awful time."

Andrew's 17-year-old sister, Cheryl McMillan, had earlier told Scottish Television's Scotland Today programme that the toddler was the "life and soul" of the family.

'Brilliant wee boy'

"If everybody was upset he would cheer you up. For a two-year-old he acted about 22," she said.

"He was just amazing. He was a pure brilliant wee boy."

Tributes outside Andrew Morton's home
Flowers and tributes have been left outside Andrew's home

Andrew's mother, 34-year-old Sharon McMillan, told the Evening Times newspaper that she thought airguns should be banned.

Her son's condition deteriorated after the incident in Cambusdoon Road in the Easterhouse area of the city shortly before 1900 GMT on Wednesday.

He was taken to Glasgow Royal Infirmary before being transferred to the Southern General, which specialises in head injuries.

His family were at his bedside when he died.

Fireman shot

About 40 officers and a ballistics expert were called in to investigate the incident and the shooting of a firefighter at about the same time.

The 34-year-old firefighter was hit by a pellet as his crew attended a report of a kitchen fire in Cambusdoon Road. He was not hurt.

If there are any lessons to be learned then I will assure people we will learn them
Cathy Jamieson
Justice Minister

The incident was raised at the Scottish Labour Party conference in Dundee on Friday.

Justice Minister Cathy Jamieson said: "I want to tell the people of Scotland that we will look very, very closely at this incident and if there are any lessons to be learned then I will assure people we will learn them.

"And I have to say to those who say that airguns aren't harmful - just look again at the pictures in your newspapers this morning and just read again the devastation to that family, and please think again."

'Terrible tragedy'

Speaking to Radio Clyde at the conference, Prime Minister Tony Blair said: "It's absolutely appalling.

"You feel absolutely terrible for the family and for the little boy. It is a terrible, terrible tragedy."

Councillor Joe Lowe, convener of the Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Board, said: "My thoughts and the thoughts of everyone in the board and Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Service are with Andrew's family."


SEE ALSO:
Minister reviews airgun measures
04 Mar 05 |  Scotland


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