Mom, daughter shot in legs outside Howick club

2009-03-23 00:00

“I am very lucky to be alive and to have my leg, and all he wanted was money.”

This was said by Tristan Riley (23) who is recovering at St Anne’s Hospital after she and her mother were shot outside their nightclub, Late Night Bells, at Belissimo’s restaurant in Howick, in the early hours of Saturday.

Tristan and her mother Karen (46) had just finished cashing up and were about to leave the nightclub when they were approached in the parking lot by an armed man demanding money.

“The suspect held the gun to my mother’s head telling us he wanted money,” said Tristan Riley, who intervened and hit the man over the head with her handbag. The man fired randomly, hitting both her and her mother in the legs.

“I heard three or four shots and Tristan screaming ‘I’ve been shot’, and I ran out of the club to see what was going on,” said part-owner Craig Lewis (34).

Lewis said he saw the armed man hit Karen Riley over the head with a gun, called for security and then ran out to confront the man.

The man held the gun to Lewis’s head demanding money.

“Luckily I had money in my wallet, which I gave to him. He also made me crawl around to find the black bag that Tristan used to hit him over the head with and demanded that I give him my cellphone,” said Lewis.

The man then ran off in the direction of the Tweedie informal settlement.

The Rileys were taken to St Anne’s Hospital. Tristan has had a blood transfusion and is awaiting surgery to remove the bullet that went through her left thigh into her right thigh and is lodged in her buttock.

“He really stuffed me over. I long for my physiotherapist so that I can learn to walk again … the pain is also really bad.

“The nurses and staff at St Anne’s have really been wonderful though,” said Tristan.

Karen Riley was discharged yesterday, but is also struggling to walk after being shot twice in both legs.

Said Lewis, “I am trying to look at the positives. Though it is peculiar that he didn’t shoot me, because I was more of a threat, the main thing is that everyone is still alive.”

Police have made no arrests yet.

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