A MUM was left with blood pouring from her leg after an early-evening town centre shooting.
Shocked Claire Trowsdale, 31, was walking along York Road, in Hartlepool, when she was struck by a pellet believed to have been fired from an air gun.
When she reached down and felt her leg her hand was covered in blood that had soaked through her jeans.
Medics at One Life Hartlepool later removed a pellet from her right leg but no lasting damage was caused.
The mum-of-three today told of her horror and how the incident had left her nervous about going out.
Claire was with partner, Brian Twidale, 42, when the incident happened at about 7.30pm last Friday night.
She said: “I went to get a bank statement from the cash machine and we walked along York Road.
“I just heard like a jet of air and something whacked me on the knee and I said ‘what’s that?’
“At first I thought it was an elastic band or something but I felt my knee and saw blood in my hand.
“There was quite a lot of blood. Then I started getting shooting pains afterwards.”
Claire, a canteen assistant at Hartlepool Sixth Form College, staggered to a nearby bus stop.
She and Brian went to her mum Christine Trowsdale’s house where Claire removed her jeans and inspected the wound.
She then went to One Life Hartlepool where nurses removed a black pellet and bandaged her wound.
Claire, mum to Jack, 12, Jamie, 11, and Bradley, eight, added: “I was shocked. I’m still nervous about going out.”
Brian, unemployed, said: “It sounded like an air weapon and I looked down and saw blood through her jeans.
“I automatically looked round to see who was there and there wasn’t any more pellets flying about.”
The couple, of Rift House, Hartlepool, reported the incident to police and officers are now appealing for any witnesses to come forward.
Anyone with information is asked to call (01642) 326326 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.