Kesgrave shooting: Teen who tried to kill friend set to be sentenced
- Credit: Archant
A teenager who lay in wait for a friend and shot him in the face at close range, causing devastating injuries, is expected to be sentenced on Friday (September 24).
The 16-year-old boy, who was 15 at the time of the shooting in Friends Walk, Kesgrave, on September 7 last year was found guilty of attempted murder by a jury in June after a month-long trial.
The teenager, who cannot be named because of his age, was also found guilty of possessing a shotgun with intent to endanger life.
He was due to have been sentenced last month but the hearing was adjourned after Judge Martyn Levett said he wanted more information about the defendant.
At that hearing the court heard that three weeks after the shooting, while the teenager was in custody, he said he would “probably kill again.”
Reading from a pre-sentence report Judge Levett said that during a game of Jenga as bricks were removed each young person was asked about their plans for the future and the defendant had answered “probably kill again.”
The court heard that when he was asked what he wanted to do later in life he had replied: “I will probably be inside until I'm 40 and I would like to be famous for chemical warfare.”
The judge said he would have to consider whether the comments were "bravado".
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During the teenager’s trial the court heard the shooting took place as the victim was walking to Kesgrave High School on September 7 last year, on the first day of term.
Riel Karmy-Jones QC said the defendant had taken his grandfather’s double barrelled shotgun before driving to Friends Walk in Grange Farm Kesgrave in his father’s car.
There he lay in wait for the boy for more than an hour and when he saw him at around 8.40am, he ordered him to get in the car.
The boy, also aged 15, refused and was then shot at close range resulting in a “significant" injury to the side of his face.
The court heard that he recalled hearing a bang and falling to the ground and seeing the defendant standing nearby looking “calm and collected and not bothered”.
He suffered a stroke after being taken to hospital and had been left partially paralysed with some brain damage and wasn’t fit enough to attend the trial.
Experts estimated that the muzzle of the gun was between 0.75m and 1.5m away from the victim’s face when it was fired.
A friend of both boys later told police that he had been planning the attack for a year but had wrongly assumed he was joking.
Police located the car the teenager had been driving in Ipswich two hours later and had to smash the window to get him out.
A Beretta double-barrelled shotgun was found in the car along with two boxes of shotgun cartridges.
When the teenager was told he was being arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, he told officers: "I am 100% guilty of that. I've done what I wanted to do - scummy as though it is.”
Giving evidence during the trial he denied deliberately firing the gun at the victim.
He claimed the victim had subjected him to years of “humiliation and fear” and said he had planned to kidnap him and threaten him with a gun to teach him a lesson.
The court heard that since the attack the victim, who had known the defendant since primary school, had undergone 15 operations including major surgery on his jaw and skull.
He could now walk short distances but was unable to use his left arm and required support for day-to-day activities
He also had cognitive difficulties and further surgery was planned in the future.
In a personal impact statement he said the “callous” attack had "ruined his career aspirations" and had left him "picking up the pieces" of his life.
The victim's father said that what happened would "haunt him forever".
He said his son would "never have the life he was destined for" and described the time he had spent at his hospital bedside following the shooting as "75 days of hell".
The victim's mother described the defendant as "evil and full of hatred.”