A man accused of shooting in broad daylight in a street in Oldham has been sentenced at Manchester Crown Court.
Daniel Whelan, 33, of Unsworth Way, Oldham, has been jailed for 12 years after pleading guilty to possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.
On Wednesday, 5 July 2023, just after 7pm, Whelan was caught on CCTV on Great Gable Close in Oldham speaking to occupants of a VW Golf in a car park when a grey BMW X3 pulled up near Whelan; he passed a white plastic bag to the passengers in the Golf. The occupants of the VW Golf exited their vehicle and attacked Daniel Whelan before taking the white plastic bag out of his hands and turning their attention to the driver of the grey BMW, continuing their assault and robbery.
The grey BMW, with Whelan now in the passenger seat, continued to drive along Horsedge Road in Oldham, which was shown slowly driving on CCTV, thought by investigators to be an attempt to locate a known target.
The BMW comes to a sudden stop, and Whelan proceeds to get out of the passenger seat and fires a shot containing a 9mm bullet towards a Ford Focus but misses. Instead, he hit a car belonging to a member of the public, a family, who heard a loud bang. Thankfully, the family in the car was unharmed but understandably left shaken by this ordeal.
Police were made aware of reports of a firearms discharge after the owner of the Peugeot became mindful of a bullet hole in his car the following day. The detectives in GMP’s Operation Challenger Team in Oldham launched an investigation. They recovered a 9mm bullet case from the scene, and Daniel Whelan was arrested a few days after the incident. Despite giving a no-comment interview, he was charged and remanded into custody ahead of the trial.
Detective Constable Andy Pearson of GMP's Operation Challenger Team said: "One of our continued priorities across the force is ensuring that the communities of Greater Manchester are safe from serious violent crime, and thankfully, this investigation allowed us to remove a dangerous individual from our streets.
"Thankfully, whilst no one was injured during the incident, it was clear that Whelan showed no consideration for the safety of members of the public who were in the area at the time. The situation could have easily been very different and had tragic consequences.
"Whelan is now behind bars for the foreseeable future, which will stop him from committing any potential acts of violence with a dangerous weapon; he is no longer a threat to the people of our communities.”
*Anyone with information about serious violent crimes or weapons is encouraged to contact police 101 or via the LiveChat function at www.gmp.police.uk or the independent charity Crimestoppers at 0800 555 111.