HUNDREDS of gun offences were recorded in the county last year, new figures have revealed.

West Yorkshire Police recorded 480 crimes with a gun in 2018-2019, according to Home Office data.

It comes amid a national rise in gun crime with nearly 10,000 offences involving firearms across England and Wales.

A Bradford mum whose son was left with ball bearings lodged in the back of his head, ear and face after being shot just after Christmas at has spoken of her worry.

“It’s just horrible,” she said.

“It does have an impact on everybody. It just needs to stop.”

At the time, she sent out a strong message to parents, urging them to be aware of what their teenagers are up to.

“It could be YOU who gets that dreaded knock on the door to say that your child has been hurt or is dead,” she said.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesperson said a 15-year-old male was arrested over the incident, but he was later released without charge.

If anyone can assist further, they should contact Bradford District CID on 101 or use the contact options on the West Yorkshire Police website.

The Telegraph & Argus often reports on court cases and incidents where a gun has been used.

Back in April last year, a man and two teenagers were locked up for a total of more than 33 years for a shooting at a house in Thornton.

Michael Webster, 28, of Hill Crest Swillington, Leeds, was jailed for 20 years, Byron Kiloh, 19, of Broadstone Way, Holme Wood, was sentenced to nine years and four months in a Young Offenders’ Institute, while a third defendant, a boy aged 16, who could not be named because of his age, received four years.

The court heard they used an automatic “AK-47 style” rifle with “full metal jacket bullets”. Of the 7,841 firearms discharges recorded in Britain between 2008 and 2018, just 12 involved the use of automatic rifles.

Prosecutor Giles Hendron said this was the only case of those 12 where the perpetrators had been identified and convicted.

This week, Shoaib Mahmood, 20, of Beech Terrace, Undercliffe, was jailed for five years for possession of a zip gun. And earlier this month, Sean Durrant, 22, of Dick Lane, Bradford, was jailed for more than 13 years, with an extended licence period, after twice firing a sawn-off shotgun at a Low Moor house where a children’s party was taking place.

While figures have risen nationally, there was one fewer offence in West Yorkshire last year than in 2017-18.

The incidents include offences where a firearm has been fired, used as a blunt instrument or as a threat.

Offences with low-powered weapons such as BB guns and pepper spray are included in police figures, alongside shotguns, handguns and rifles. However, with the data excluding crimes involving air weapons, the real number may be higher.

It means there were 21 firearms offences per 100,000 population in West Yorkshire – above the national average of 11. West Yorkshire Police said firearms offending is treated “exceptionally seriously” by the force and the statistics, which cover the 12-month period up to March last year “do not reflect the current picture in West Yorkshire”.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Ridley said data released this month shows the number of offences involving firearms fell by nearly 20 per cent between April and December last year.

He added: “A huge amount of work has been ongoing in West Yorkshire Police in recent years to tackle gun related offending including the formation of a dedicated Firearms Prevent team.

“This unit provides specialist support in the investigation of offences involving these types of weapons and its work has helped support initiatives at a District and Force level to target criminal groups who supply and use guns.

“These include the use of gang injunctions to disrupt criminal groups together with proactive operations to target firearms offenders and gun related activity."

A recent weapons surrender saw West Yorkshire Police recoer 21 handguns and eight shotguns and early intervention work is carried out to try and stop young people from becoming involved in gang and firearms-related crime.

Anyone with information about gun crime can make a report anonymously to the independent Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.