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An X-ray released by German police on Tuesday shows a bullet lodged in the back of the head of a man who believes he may have been shot in 2004 or 2005 — he's not sure which. ((Bochum Police/Reuters))

A Polish man living in Germany was shot in the back of his head five years ago but didn't realize it until just recently, police in Bochum said Tuesday.

The 35-year-old man was drunk and partying in the western town of Herne when he was hit by a .22-calibre bullet, police said.

The man recalled receiving a blow to the head but didn't seek medical assistance at the time, police said. The bullet did not penetrate his skull.

Recently, however, the man felt a lump on the back of his head and went to see a doctor, they said.

An X-ray showed an object under his skin, and doctors operated and found the projectile.

Police suspect the bullet was a stray and may have been fired by a reveler in celebration.