THE horrified parents of a 14-year-old boy spoke of their shock after yobs shot him in the face with an air-gun.
Matthew Hargreaves, of Orchard Street, Great Harwood, was out with three friends in fields near Great Harwood Golf Club when the attack happened.
Matthew, a pupil of Norden High School and Sports College, said: "I was just out having a laugh with my friends when we heard a noise. I put my hand to my face and there was loads of blood pouring out.
"My friends went to see what was going on but there was nobody there.''
Matthew managed to make his way back home, where his horrified mum Val, 47, took him to Accrington Victoria Hospital.
She said: "When he came in he was just white and there was blood all over his T-shirt. We took him to the hospital and we thought at first the steel pellet had just grazed him, but then an X-ray showed it had lodged in his jaw."
Matthew, who also lives with his dad Keith, 60, and brother Andrew, 17, was then taken to Blackburn Royal Infirmary and had to endure a half-hour operation to have the pellet removed. He was eventually discharged at around midnight.
Val said: "In terms of keeping him off school, the doctors said to see how he goes. When he came back he tried to eat a bacon sandwich but he couldn't manage it very easily.
"It could have been his eye they shot and then he really would have been in trouble. You just don't expect people to be hiding in bushes shooting at a 14-year-old.
"These guns should not be sold. They are just too dangerous.''
Sergeant Ian Corbett of Great Harwood Police said they were investigating the incident and were appealing for any information which could help them trace the people who attacked Matthew.