Shocking moment ‘coward’ found stashing loaded gun in daughters’ underwear drawer

This is the shocking moment police found firearms a cowardly gangster hid inside his children’s underwear drawers in south London.

Danny Butler, 44, recklessly stashed six guns, ammunition and drugs at the home he shared with his wife and three daughters, one of whom was just 18-months-old.

Details of Butler’s arrest emerged as figures show nearly half of shootings investigated by the Metropolitan Police go unsolved.

Detectives declared war on underworld armourers bringing death and injury to the capital’s streets.

Sebastiaan James-Kraan, 20, died after being shot by a group of men in Hanwell on June 9.

A nine-year-old girl is still fighting for life following a drive-by shooting in Dalston, one of at least six people injured in four attacks across barely two weeks.

Last year alone, 386 illegal firearms were seized in London – more than one a day.

At Butler’s home in New Park Road, Tulse Hill three handguns, one of which was loaded, were discovered in the girls’ clothes drawer.

Another pistol and a pump action sawn-off shotgun was in their parents’ wardrobe, along with a large amount of ammunition.

A second sawn-off shotgun was found in a coat cupboard.

Further searches uncovered Class B drugs lying on the floor of the living room which were easily accessible to toddler. Police seized Class A drugs kept inside a TV unit and coat cupboard.

On April 22, Butler was jailed for 18 years at Croydon Crown Court for possession of firearms with intent to endanger life and having drugs with intent to supply.

Aftermath of Dalston shooting which left a nine-year-old girl fighting for life (ES Composite)
Aftermath of Dalston shooting which left a nine-year-old girl fighting for life (ES Composite)

Officers alerted Lambeth social services immediately due to the safeguarding risk presenting the children.

Detective Superintendent Victoria Sullivan described Butlers’ actions as “reckless”, adding: “It’s really sad to see an example of gangs taking advantage of vulnerable people in our communities to store firearms for them.

“Our investigation led to officers removing a dangerous man from our streets, and protecting vulnerable children.

“Significant weapons were found in the house which could have been used to potentially kill or injure others.”

Jackie Taylor’s son Tyrese Miller, 22, was fatally shot in a case of mistaken identity as he returned from an evening at the pub with friends in Croydon in April last year. Two men have been convicted for their roles.

Ms Taylor said: “No mother should have to bury their son like I have.

Danny Butler, 44, and three handguns discovered in the girls’ clothes drawer in Tulse Hill. (Metropolitan Police)
Danny Butler, 44, and three handguns discovered in the girls’ clothes drawer in Tulse Hill. (Metropolitan Police)

“What happened to Tyrese has changed all of us. None of us will ever really come to terms with what has happened.

“I worry that if this can happen to Tyrese, it can happen to anyone.

“Once you met Tyrese, you never forgot him. He was loved. He was the centre of our family. He had friends everywhere.

“Sometimes it was easier to say who he didn’t know. For someone that lived such a short life, he meant an incredible amount to so many of us.”

Commander Paul Brogden, who is responsible for the Met’s Specialist Crime, said: “Guns destroy lives and communities.

“The recent shootings in parts of London are a sad reminder that there is still work for us to do when it comes to cracking down on illegal firearms, and my thoughts are with those affected.

Jackie Taylor, mother of Tyrese Miller, 22, shot dead in Croydon, south London (Metropolitan Police)
Jackie Taylor, mother of Tyrese Miller, 22, shot dead in Croydon, south London (Metropolitan Police)

“The Met’s sustained work on firearms shows our commitment to making London a safer place.

“We will continue to build trust in the communities disproportionately impacted by these offences and remain relentless in our pursuit of criminals that use and supply firearms.

“Our progress should serve as a message to criminals and gang members using firearms —we will come after you, and we will bring you to justice.”

He added officers are dismantling serious and organised crime groups who pose the greatest harm.

This has led to a 15-year low in firearms offences.

However, the proportion of Met cases that end with an offender facing prosecution has hit 52 per cent, which is the highest rate in 11 years, but leaves 48 percent unsolved.

Detectives believe this is partly due to fear preventing witnesses coming forward or sharing vital evidence including doorbell footage, and the fact that some victims want to get revenge themselves rather than co-operate with the police.

Sebastiaan James-Kraan, 20 (Metropolitan Police)
Sebastiaan James-Kraan, 20 (Metropolitan Police)

Since March 2023, there has been a reduction from 196 firearms offences in the previous 12 months to 145.

Gun murders have reduced from 12 in 2021, to 10 in 2022 and eight last year.

Across Harrow, Brent and Barnet in west London, there hasn’t been a single fatal shooting since 2020, compared to at least one a year since 2014.

In those boroughs over the last four years, 80 people have been charged with various firearm offences, with 64 of them convicted resulting in a total of 367 years in jail.

Specialist officers achieved a 44 per cent cut in gun crime in Lambeth and Southwark in south east London.

Around half of shootings in the city are believed to be linked to gangs.

Det Supt Sullivan added: “Often the victim themselves who’s been shot do not want to divulge to police and that might be because they’re seeking retribution themselves.

“So potentially today’s victim could be tomorrow’s suspect. And that’s why it’s really important that we act really, really quickly to try and dissolve that situation.”

An increasing number of shootings involve converted blank firearms, originally designed for non-lethal purposes such as bird-scaring, that are converted into deadly weapons.

Around 46 per cent of the 386 weapons seized by the Met last year were converted blank firers.