A ‘magnet fisher’ from Chesterfield ‘couldn’t believe his eyes’ when his unique hobby led to him pulling out a sawn-off shotgun from a town centre canal.
Jamie Fothergill had purchased a special type of magnet off Amazon designed to pull metal objects from water, and was out trawling Tapton Lock for treasure with his six-year-old son in tow.
The 33-year-old made the shocking discovery on the afternoon of Tuesday (July 3) and whisked the gun home before alerting the police.
Jamie, who works at a nearby college and lives in Brimington, said: “I already do a bit of metal detecting and wanted to give magnet fishing a go.
“I’ve found some interesting things in the already, such as a smashed up safe and even a couple of knives from World War Two.
“But obviously I’ve never come across anything like this.
“I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw this weapon, which had obviously been at the bottom of the canal for a while but could still be in working order for all I knew, and had to be made safe. I thought- how did that get there? Has somebody dumped it?
“I wanted to get my son out of the area quickly so bagged up the gun before taking it home and calling the police.”
A spokesman for Derbyshire Police said: “We were called by a member of the public who had discovered a firearm in Tapton Lock, Chesterfield on July 3.
“The man who discovered the shotgun had taken it back to his home and officers attended his home to recover it.
“An investigation into the history of the gun was undertaken, including forensics, to link it to any crimes.
“No evidence was found, the gun was made safe and then sent for destruction.”