A firearms expert has told a jury that a shooting victim was ‘lucky’ to not be seriously hurt after being hit three times by bullets.

Richard Bowser fired a handgun through a wooden door while Lee Jackson hid away from the accused moments after having the weapon held to his head.

Teesside Crown Court heard how one bullet was still lodged in Lee Jackson’s arm after he was shot after Bowser was involved in a violent disturbance at the country’s highest pub.

The 46-year-old was charged with two counts of attempted murder after he allegedly targeted Mr Jackson outside the bar before he followed him to the outdoor toilets and threatened him with the gun.

Andre de Villiers Horne, a firearms expert, told jurors that the pistol that was used in the shooting had been unprofessionally re-activated but there was no suggestion it was by the defendant.

He said one bullet had gone through the door after been fired from close range but three other bullets had been fired from further away resulting in them spinning sideways and losing velocity.

Christine Egerton, prosecuting, asked the expert what effect the incorrect barrel would have had on the effectiveness of the handgun.

He said the reactivation meant that the handgun did not work correctly and caused the bullets spin out sideways.

Jurors heard how Mr Jackson was hit three times – one bullet lodged in his arm while two others grazed his chest and abdomen – after being fired through the door.

The expert said: “He was very lucky indeed that the bullet had lost sufficient velocity to only cause and abrasion.

“He was lucky that the ones that hit his chest and abdomen didn’t go through the door straight because it could have had the same result as the one that went into his arm.”

Ms Egerton asked how the handgun was fired and the expert said: “Every time you want to discharge the weapon you had to pull the hammer back and then pull the trigger.

“All four cartridges in the cylinder had been discharged and they were empty.”

Earlier in the trial, the jury heard how Bowser had said ‘goodnight sweetheart’ and pulled the trigger of the handgun when he placed at gunshot victim’s head.

Jurors watched CCTV footage from inside the Tan Hill Inn showing the accused throwing punches and slapping staff and drinkers before he was forced into the external lobby of the remote pub.

The defendant was arrested at the venue, which lies on the Pennine Way in one of the remotest parts of the Yorkshire Dales, after he was Tasered by armed police.

A search of his glamping pod led to the recovery of two weapons, a pistol and a shotgun, while ammunition was also discovered on his person.

See more court stories from The Northern Echo by clicking here

Get all the latest crime and court updates, for less than the price of a coffee, with a Premium Plus digital subscription to The Northern Echo. Click here

Bowser, of Worcester Place, Bishop Auckland, denies two charges of attempted murder, two firearms charges, and one of grievous bodily harm.

The jury heard how he accepts that he fired the weapon at the door and maintains that he only discharged the weapon to she Mr Jackson that the gun was real.

The defendant has already pleaded guilty to three counts of assault and two charges of possession of a prohibited weapon.

The trial continues.