msnbc.com news services
updated 6/16/2011 10:38:52 AM ET 2011-06-16T14:38:52

Bedeviled by a painful wart that no cream, ointment or doctor could cure, Sean Murphy reportedly decided to try a radical — and permanent — at-home procedure. His surgical tool: a 12-bore Beretta shotgun.

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In a move that seems fitting of the Wild West, rather than modern England, the security guard fortified himself with a healthy dose of the local anaesthetic — in lager form, naturally — stretched out his left hand, aimed, and pulled the trigger.

Unfortunately for Murphy, the blast had collateral damage. According to The Telegraph, it blew off nearly the entire middle finger on his left hand, and left the 38-year-old facing possible prison time for illegal possession of a firearm.

With just a stump to show for his efforts, Murphy appeared in court earlier this week and was handed a suspended 16-week prison sentence and 100 hours of community service.

"I’m happy with that," Murphy reportedly said of his sentence.

"I know I could have gone to jail for up to 15 years for a firearms offence. My solicitor did a very good job."

Defending the at-home surgery, Murphy's lawyer, Richard Haigh, told the Telegraph that Murphy had been "a victim of his own stupidity when domestic pressures got to him."

Despite all the trouble he caused, Murphy stood by his decision, telling the Yorkshire Post: "The best thing is that the wart has gone. It was giving me a lot of trouble."

The treatment was administered in March, and he has since lost his job.

Fortify, aim, fire
According to a report, the blemish was on the joint closest to the tip of his middle finger, and was causing the digit to bend unnaturally.

Murphy, who told the court he found gun under a hedge, reportedly fortified himself with several pints of beer, stretched out his left hand, and aimed the gun's barrel.

Murphy told the Telegraph that the beer wasn't to blame for his shot taking off more of his finger than he intended. He places blame on the weapon's recoil.

Despite the inherent risk of using a gun when a scalpel would do, Murphy told the Yorkshire Post he was surprised by his disfigurement.

"I didn't expect to lose my finger as well when I shot it but the gun recoiled and that was it. The wart was gone and so was most of my finger. There was nothing left, so no chance to re-attach it."

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