A MAN is in hospital with serious injuries after he was shot in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Police officers were called to reports that a man had been shot in Moutter Close, Horden, near Peterlee, at about 1.45am on Sunday, December 8.

A man has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and two women are also in custody on suspicion of conspiracy to commit murder.

The victim, who is said to have staggered outside and collapsed just yards from his back door, was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

The Northern Echo spoke to one woman who lives nearby and said she called the emergency services for help after the injured man went to her front door shouting for help minutes after it happened.

She said: "I was in bed upstairs and he came to my door shouting  'help, ring the police, get an ambulance' so I called 999.

"He was drowsy and his chest was a mess, covered in blood. The call handler told me to keep talking to him but he staggered outside and collapsed at the end of another house.

"Then all the police and ambulances arrived and he was rushed to hospital. It was awful, he was such a mess. The police have been outside ever since."

Detective Chief Inspector Stephen Thubron, of Durham Constabulary, said: “I am appealing to anyone within this community who may have witnessed this incident or have any information to come forward and speak to us.”

The Northern Echo:

Police officers and crime scene investigators have been at the scene all day and parts of the street are cordoned off. The investigation into the shooting is centred around one house, thought to have been where the victim lived and where the incident took place.

Witnesses have been urged to call Durham Constabulary on 101, quoting incident reference 51 of December 8.

Alternatively information can be passed on anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800-555111.