A DANGEROUS gunman who sprayed people with bullets in a terrifying shooting on a Sheffield city centre street was today at the centre of a nationwide police manhunt.
Detectives took the unusual step of issuing the name and photograph of a man they want to speak to in connection with the horrifying gun attack.
Joel Soloman Williams is believed to hold vital information about the shooting outside the SADACCA Sheffield and District African Caribbean Community Association on The Wicker.
The 28-year-old, from Sheffield, who has lived in the Manor and Arbourthorne areas, is known as ‘Juvi’ or ‘Juvenile’ and also has known links with Nottingham.
Police today stressed members of the public should not approach him directly.
But they appealed to anyone who recognises him, or who knows of his whereabouts, to get in touch with detectives immediately.
Police said the shooting - when a handgun was fired into a crowd of people gathered outside SADACCA - caused “mass panic”, and that it was a miracle nobody was injured or killed.
The shooting is being investigated as attempted murder.
“A male discharged three shots into a crowd of people,” said Detective Inspector Bob Chapman, from South Yorkshire Police’s intelligence unit.
“It caused mass panic, with people running for cover.”
He said people were leaving SADACCA at the time of the shooting and there were groups of friends gathered outside when the gun was fired.
“A firearm was produced by a male and fired three times into the crowd outside,” he said.
“The consequences could have been serious injuries or the loss of life, so it is essential we find the person responsible.”
DI Chapman said the motive for the attack is not yet known.
Detectives have made a nationwide appeal for help in tracing Williams, and believe he could be in hiding anywhere in Britain.
They want to hear from anyone who knows where he is or where he has been.
“We have issued the picture of Williams in the hope members of the public can help us track him down,” said DI Chapman.
“But we would urge people not to approach him because of the nature of the offence we are investigating.”
He said police were not made aware of the incident until a few hours after the shooting, and by then all witnesses outside the club had vanished. Despite a “strenuous” investigation since then police have not been able to track their suspect down.
n Anyone with information about the shooting, which happened in the early hours of Sunday, October 17, or who knows the whereabouts of Williams, should call South Yorkshire Police on 0114 296 4447 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.