BUS passenger Robert Tyree was left terrified for his life when a Magnum-style pistol was pointed at his forehead.
Robbie Jenkins had fired the airgun at a seat on the vehicle before holding it to 18-year-old Mr Tyree’s head and saying: “I just want to pop someone in the skull.”
Drunken Jenkins, 19, was jailed for 14 months yesterday after admitting possession of an imitation .357 Magnum pistol with intent to cause fear of violence.
It happened on March 16 last year, in Newent while aboard the Gloucester-Ross bus, Gloucester Crown Court heard.
“It was put straight between his eyes and brushed against his skin,” said prosecutor Janine Wood.
She told the court that by the time Mr Tyree got off the number 32 bus, he was physically shaking from the ordeal.
Jenkins, formerly from Newent but now of London Road, Gloucester wept as he was sent to prison and said ‘I’m sorry’ to the public gallery.
Mr Tyree was the only passenger upstairs in the bus when it left Gloucester but later Jenkins got on board with another man.
“The defendant was drinking from a can of Fosters and smoking a cannabis joint and appeared to be drunk,” she said.
“The defendant asked Mr Tyree if he wanted to see something. With that he pulled out the air pistol and the witness believed it to be a real handgun.
“Jenkins told him he had bought the gun in Wolverhampton and he had broken into a Co-op store. He fired the weapon into a seat on the bus and the witness heard a loud bang and saw smoke. In fact it later appeared the gun had not been loaded when it was fired.
“The other man with the defendant told him to put the gun away. But the defendant got it out again and said ‘I just want to pop someone in the skull.”
The next day Jenkins was arrested and took police to Newent Lake where he had hidden the gun in a bag in a storm drain.
He said he had been drunk on the bus and had little recollection of what he had done.
In a victim statement Mr Tyree said: “I felt shocked at seeing the gun. I had never seen a real gun before and I thought this one was real. I thought when it was pointed at me I was going to get shot. I was so shocked I got off the bus shaking.”
Joe Maloney, defending, said Jenkins, who has five previous convictions for unrelated offences, said: “He knows this was a stupid stupid thing to do and it is no wonder the victim was very very worried. He very much regrets his behaviour.”
Judge William Hart told Jenkins: “You spoke to the victim in a way which was an attempt to give him the impression you were some sort of gangster. He became increasingly anxious about your behaviour and he was justified in that.
“You pointed the gun at him and effectively put it between his eyes so the barrel touched his skin. He thought it was real and was extremely shocked. The message has to go out to you and anyone else thinking of behaving in this way that conduct of this sort is bound to result in an immediate prison sentence.”