Mum nearly lost eye in air rifle shooting

Claire Robinson and her daughter
Claire Robinson and her daughter

A Wigan mum who was shot in the face whilst out shopping with her young daughter is urging people to help catch the culprit.

Claire Robinson, 30, from Winstanley, was with her 15-month-old daughter Olivia at Aldi in Standish when she was shot just above the eye with an air rifle by an unknown assailant.

I just can’t believe anyone would allow kids to have these guns

Claire Robinson

The attack happened at around 7pm on Monday night outside the Preston Road store, as Claire was wheeling the trolley back to the store after loading her car. “It really hurt,” she said.

“I screamed and put my hand to my face. At first I thought someone was throwing a stone. There were loads of people there but no one did anything. It was literally in my eyebrow, an inch lower and it would have taken my eye out.”

Claire, who works as a nurse at Wigan Infirmary, was eventually approached by another young mum who helped her to clear up the bleeding.

“There were three baby wipes full of blood,” she said. “They must have been idiots to target someone with a baby. I’m just so glad it was me and not Olivia. I usually put her in the car first but it didn’t this day.”

After arriving home, Claire was urged to call police and her mum went back to the store to speak to management for any information they may have.

Metal air rifle pellets were found on the floor next to where Claire had been shot, but police were unable to find the culprits due to a lack of CCTV or evidence.

“I just can’t believe anyone would allow kids to have these guns,” she said. “Anyone with them should be keeping them locked up. I don’t even know of any fields around there, it’s all residential and shops.

“I just want whoever it was that did it to be caught. I didn’t even think you could bleed so much from a cut on your face. I think the shock of it was worse. I just did not expect it at all. I didn’t hear anything, and I didn’t see where it could have come from.”

Claire is urging anyone with information about the shooting to contact police on 101.

Social media has erupted with support for Claire and outrage against the perpetrator.

James Fowler commented in a Standish forum. He said: “The problem is that the gun is completely innocent it’s the idiot that is behind it. Same as anything in the wrong hands it is dangerous. This definitely needs treating as the firearms offence that it is and dealt with accordingly.”