A carpenter has been convicted of assault after accidentally shooting a workmate through the leg with a nail gun.
Ashley Humphries, 35, jokingly tapped Peter Lloyd-Carter on the leg with the power tool not realising it was loaded.
He shot the victim just above his knee and narrowly missed the femoral artery – which would have killed him within minutes if ruptured.
Mr Lloyd-Carter had to undergo surgery under general anaesthetic and is still unable to work six weeks after the incident.
South Somerset Magistrates Court in Yeovil, Somerset, heard how the incident happened in the canteen of a building development near Castle Cary on March 13.
Mr Lloyd-Carter was a self-employed carpenter working on a kitchen installation and was taking a morning break when Humphries entered the room.
Emma Chetland, prosecuting, said: “He was taking a morning break in the site canteen when Humphries came in, approached him and then placed the gun on his leg and the trigger fired.
“He immediately felt a sharp stinging pain and realised a nail had been put in his leg and shouted out.
“Humphries then said, ‘Oh f*** there’s nails in it’, and as the victim straightened his leg he thought he was going to pass out.”
Humphries immediately admitted responsibility and said he took the nail gun into the canteen to leave on a radiator to keep warm for use later.
He did not think it was loaded and was extremely shocked when it went off.
Chris Ivory, defending, said: “This was a tragic accident almost similar to a bad sketch show but the two men are friends and there is no animosity between them.”
Mr Lloyd-Carter has been left unable to work and is now pursuing a claim through the civil courts.
Humphries, of Crewkerne, was sentenced to a one-month curfew order and was told to pay £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge.