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West Bowling residents 'living in fear' after latest shooting
A police chief has vowed not to let a gun-toting criminal minority create a climate of fear after a second shooting in West Bowling in just two weeks.
Bradford South Neighbourhood Policing Chief Inspector Damien Miller appealed for public help “to weed out” firearm offenders after the latest victim, a 27-year-old man, suffered gunshot injuries in what detectives believe was a targeted attack.
Detectives are still investigating the first shooting, which happened on April 3 when a man was blasted in the back of the legs with a shotgun near a children’s play area in Ryan Street. No arrests have been made. The shootings are not thought to be linked.
Yesterday a police cordon was in place in Parkway, close to elderly people’s bungalows and a semi-detached homes.
The shooting happened at about 11pm on Tuesday. Residents said they heard two loud blasts.
Chief Insp Miller said: “These are unacceptable actions carried out by a criminal minority which in no way represents the local community.
“We will not let them generate a climate of fear within our neighbourhoods and I can assure people that apprehending those involved in firearms is an absolute priority to the police in Bradford. West Bowling has not witnessed such a trend before and we will not allow it to become commonplace.
“Above all, we require the continued support of the public to weed out the offenders and to turn the spotlight firmly on them.”
In the latest incident, it is understood the injured man turned up at a house in the street, whose occupant called for help. It is believed he was taken to hospital by paramedics under an armed police convoy.
A member of the public who was in the A&E department at the time said patients and families were moved away from the unit’s entrance when a large number of armed police arrived in a convoy with an ambulance, uniformed officers and CID.
Police said the man’s injuries, believed to have been to his back, were consistent with a shotgun but were not believed to be life-threatening.
People living in Parkway called for more police reassurance.
Mum-of-five Angela Price said she feared for her sons’ safety. “I’m just glad my boys were at home,” she said. “If they’d been out on their way home they could have been caught up in it.
“That’s what’s scary, it’s the thought innocent people could be hurt. It used to be really quiet round here but it’s changing, that’s why a lot of people want to get out.”
Pensioner George Hamilton, who has lived in Parkway for more than 20 years, said he had been in bed watching TV when he heard the gunshots. He said: “I heard the loud bangs but I didn’t go out to see what had happened. It wasn’t any of my business. There was no shouting or cars screeching.”
Mr Hamilton said people were worried. “Two shootings on our doorstep in less than two weeks is worrying. Who wouldn’t be worried about that? We don’t wants guns on our streets.”
Izmet Shah, who looks after his disabled wife, said: “I was in the kitchen when I heard two loud bangs. The neighbours heard them too but I don’t think anyone went out. It’s a multicultural area round here, people seem to get on okay but this will worry them.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.