Neighbour arrested after pensioner shot dead in row over hedge

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The Independent Online

Police investigating the murder of a pensioner who was shot dead in a long-running dispute over a garden hedge were yesterday holding his 52-year-old neighbour under guard in hospital.

George Wilson, 66, was found with bullet wounds at his home in Webster Close, Lincoln, on Friday afternoon. He died shortly after being taken to Lincoln County Hospital. His next-door neighbour was later discovered injured and was also taken to hospital. Lincolnshire police have arrested him and said they are not looking for anyone else in connection with the shooting. Neighbours said the pair had a dispute over a hedge, only a few feet long, which ran along the border between the front gardens of their homes.

On Friday, armed police surrounded two homes in the street after responding to reports of gunfire.

Mr Wilson was found at around 3.30pm, and three hours later they discovered the second man, who was also injured. Police are refusing to reveal details of his injuries, but say they are not life threatening.

Forensic investigators are expected to remain in the street over the weekend and officers were carrying out house-to-house inquiries.

One neighbour, who did not want to be named, said Mr Wilson, whom he had known all his life, had been involved in several arguments over his garden hedge.

"I am so shocked. I never expected anything like this to happen," he said. "He was a really nice bloke and I grew up with his kids as well."

Michael Green, 48, who lives only a few doors from Mr Wilson's home, said police asked him to leave his house yesterday and stand at the end of the street.

"There was an incident and nobody could go back to their houses until everything was sorted out," he said. "I am shocked and I am still a bit stunned, really, about what has happened."

A police spokesman said: "The 52-year-old man who was taken to hospital is under arrest and under police guard.

"For operational reasons we still don't wish to disclose which hospital he is being treated at or the nature of his injuries."