Murder accused ‘saw crackers’

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A FRIEND of a teenager accused of murdering two former Sheffield University students in Florida received a phone call from him just before they were shot dead saying he had seen the ‘crackers’, or white men, walking in the area, a court heard.

Jermaine Bane, aged 21, also said he regularly saw Shawn Tyson carrying a gun.

Tyson is accused of the murders of tourists James Kouzaris, 24, and 25-year-old James Cooper, who met at university in Sheffield and were shot in an impoverished area of Sarasota, Florida, last April.

The friends, who were holidaying with Mr Cooper’s family, drunkenly walked into a rundown public housing project known as The Courts.

It is alleged Tyson tried to rob them in the early hours of April 16, then shot them several times when they said they had no money.

Tyson, 17, denies two counts of first-degree murder.

The trial continues.