'Smug' boy, 15, 'blasted pal in the face with shotgun after lying in wait for him as he walked to school'

A TEENAGER blasted his friend in the face with a shotgun from less than five feet away after waiting for him as he walked to school, a court heard. 

The 15-year-old gunman was seen with a “smug and almost righteous look” on his face as he stood over his victim who was lying on the ground in a pool of blood.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that the boy who was shot, aged 15, has been left with devastating and life changing injuries” after the incident in Suffolk, last year.

A court heard how the shooter drove away in his fathers Saab, as if “he couldn’t care less about what had happened.”

Relatives of the victim, including his “inconsolable” mum, ran to his aid and tried to stem the flow of blood with towels. 

The incident happened in a quiet residential road as his victim was walking to Kesgrave High School on the first day of the new term.

A jury heard that the teenager had told a friend nine months earlier that he wanted to shoot the victim.

His friend who thought the plan was a fantasy said that the gunman felt he was being bullied by the other boy, who has been left partially paralysed with some brain damage.

He allegedly used his grandfather’s double barrelled Beretta shotgun to blast the boy at 8.40am on September 7 last year, which left the “inner structures” of his victims face exposed.

Firearms experts later told police that the muzzle of the gun was between 0.5m and 1.75 from the victim’s face when the trigger was pulled at “very close range”.

The boy was arrested two hours later on the same day as he sat in the car close to his grandfather’s home in Ipswich.

Officers smashed a window to get him out, and found the 12 bore over-and-under shotgun on the back seat with two boxes of cartridges.

When he was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and told he was accused of shooting someone in the face he replied: “I am 100 per cent guilty of that.”

Later he added to officers: “I have done what I wanted to do. Scummy as it is, I will 100 per cent cooperate with you.”

Prosecutor Karmy-Jones QC told the court that he made no comment when questioned in police interviews. 

She said the boy had taken his father’s car and grandfather’s shotgun in the early hours of September 7 before driving to Kesgrave just before 7.13am.

The teenager who lives near Woodbridge, Suffolk, used to play with BB guns and was said to have been taught how to shoot by his grandfather.

Ms Karmy-Jones added: “He pointed the shotgun and deliberately shot him at close range causing devastating and life changing injuries.”

“He knew how to use a gun and was familiar with shotguns. He had carefully planned what he was going to do, even describing a plan in some detail to a mutual friend.”

The prosecutor said that the victim was the “slightly stronger character” in the friendship group of the three teenagers, and was accused to have subjected the gunman to “low level bullying”.

A friend claimed that he would sometimes “randomly slap” the teenage gunman on the back or push him over a table, before adding: “It was nothing serious, just rough housing”.

“He pointed the shotgun and deliberately shot him at close range"

The shot boy was said to have been “slightly pulling himself away” and distancing himself away from the teenager as he concentrated more on his studies before the shooting took place.

Ms Karmy-Jones said  the teenager had first stated that he wanted to shoot someone in October 2019, talking to a mutual friend about buying a Browning pistol.

The friend thought it was a “fantasy” but the gunman said in December 2019 that he wanted to shoot the victim, and mentioned it again three days before the incident. 

The victim recalled saying goodbye to his mother and stepped out of the house before recognising the car owned by the teenager’s father parked on the other side of the road.

He saw his friend standing beside the boot of the car, holding a shotgun which he then pointed at him before he ordered him to get into the car which he refused to do.

The jury was told that the boy remembered  “a bang” and then falling to the ground, as well as his friend “looking calm” as he lay bleeding from his wounds.

A 13-year-old girl who was walking to school saw the two boys exchanging words, with the shooter pulling the gun out of the boot and pointing it with his finger on the trigger as she walked past.

She recalled the boy saying, “What are you doing with that?” and heard a gunshot before turning round to see the gunman “looking angry and rigid”. 

The injured boy’s mother heard the gunshot and was “screaming and inconsolable” when she looked out to see her son “lying on the ground in a pool of blood”.

The teenager then lifted up the gun seemingly to show it to the mother as she screamed: “What have you done?”

Ms Karmy-Jones added: “He had a smug, almost righteous look, but he didn’t say anything.”

His mother ran downstairs, fearing that the teenager would drive over her son’s body as he drove away.

Ms Karmy-Jones went on: “He may have just thought that he didn’t need to and that he had already finished (him) off.”

Local resident Christopher Fay looked out of his bedroom window after hearing “a very loud bang ricocheting around” the road outside, and described he teenager with the gun as “cool and calm” and “not rushed”

Ms Karmy-Jones added: “The defendant pointed the gun deliberately at him causing Mr Fay to fear he would be shot.”

Other neighbours said they had earlier seen the Saab parked in the road from early in the morning with one describing the teenager as having been “scowling around”.

One said he saw the boy pointing the gun towards Mr Fay’s home before “calmly waking to the car and driving away in a composed manner”.

Local resident Ian Howard said: “He was really calm as if he knew what he was doing. He was not shaking. He just didn’t seem to care less about what had happened.”

Another neighbour said the teenager had “no sense of urgency” and left the scene “ as if he had all day”.

Ms Karmy-Jones said the victim was not fit enough to attend court, explaining that he could speak but he had been left with difficulties “processing some subtleties of language”

The teenager who is now aged 16 has denied attempted murder, possession of a shotgun with intent to endanger life and wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and a charge of possessing a shotgun with intent to cause fear of violence.

The trial continues.

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