Man who escaped police in eight hour stand-off jailed

Paul Hodge. Photo contirbuted by Surrey Police.
Paul Hodge. Photo contirbuted by Surrey Police.

A man who gave officers the run around as they stood guard of an empty house for eight hours has been jailed, Surrey Police have said.

Officers carried out a pre-planned drugs raid at a home in Careys Wood, Smallfield, on Thursday July 28.

Police said Paul Hodge was in the home and pointed a gun at officers.

The police helicopter was called along with armed officers as the force surrounded the property and cordoned off the scene.

After eight hours it was established Hodge had escaped and a manhunt was launched for the 57-year-old, police said.

He was found eleven days later by officers and was arrested.

Hodge pleaded guilty to possession of an Imitation Firearm with intent to cause fear.

Police said he was sentenced to three years in prison at Guildford Crown Court on Thursday December 8.

Detective Inspector Claire Loving from East Surrey Criminal Investigation Department, said: “Hodge’s actions that day caused a significant amount of disruption and distress to the local community in Smallfiel.

“Having a gun pointed at you is a traumatising experience for anyone. Thankfully nobody was physically harmed but the outcome could have been very different.

“I would like to express my thanks to local residents and the Smallfield community for their patience that day and for the support provided in the search for Mr Hodge.”

At the time Surrey Police said 20 firearms were seized from the home.

The warrant was one of a series of early morning raids carried out across East Surrey and Croydon that day as part of a wider large scale operation, named Operation Aragon, to dismantle a network of suspected drug dealers operating in the county.

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