Suffolk barrister shot in Barbados

A SUFFOLK barrister has relived the horrific moment he was shot by an armed robber in an exclusive Barbados resort.

Kate McGrath

A SUFFOLK barrister has relived the horrific moment he was shot by an armed robber in an exclusive Barbados resort.

Regulars to the island, Andrew Thompson and his wife Isobel were walking home from an evening meal when two men demanded they hand over money.

Within seconds - and before Mr Thompson could react - one of the men shot him through the leg, whilst the other snatched his wife's handbag.

The bullet ripped through his lower leg leaving a gaping exit wound 'about the size of a 10p piece' and severely damaging his muscle.

The couple, who live in a village outside Bury St Edmunds, were less than a mile from their hotel, the 5* exclusive golf and spa resort Sandy Lane.

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“The whole thing was over in about 15 seconds,” said Mr Thompson, 41, who is back at work just weeks after the incident on June 4.

“Out of the corner of my eye I saw two guys run across the road in a gap in the traffic.

“They ran just in front of my wife and I thought they were asking for money because we have had no problem there before. I could just see the taller one waving something in my wife's face, something silver. I did not realise what it was at the time.

“I heard my wife say 'No' or something of that sort and immediately the taller of the pair came around her to where I was.

“He said to me 'Give me your wallet' and almost in that second he fired the gun. I instantly felt I had been hit, but it did not hurt as much as it should have. He then paused before demanding my wallet again.

“I was completely in shock and so angry that he had shot me that I just stared at him for about two seconds before he ran off with the other man, who yanked my wife's handbag and ripped it from the strap.”

Mr Thompson was taken to the nearest hospital where he spent 7 hours being treated by medics. Doctors are hopeful he will make a full recovery, despite the muscle being badly damaged.

Tourist bosses maintain that armed robbery is very rare on the island, especially the west coast.

As yet, police have been unable to find the men, although say they are following leads.

Mr Thompson, who works as a barrister in East Anglia, believes it was an amateur robbery.

“The gun was definitely not aimed at my upper body. It was either to prove the gun was real or incapacitate me. He may not have intended to kill me. If he had waved the gun in my face I might have given him my wallet, but he shot me before I had chance to act.”

The couple have visited the island about 20 times and stayed at the hotel at least ten times. Mr Thompson said the incident will not discourage him from returning.