A 22-year-old man was shot dead at point-blank range in Sheffield city centre by a masked gunman after being involved in a long-running feud with a group of Somalians, a court heard.
Jordan Thomas was shot twice in the chest as a car he was in stopped at traffic lights on Derek Dooley Way in December last year.
Sheffield Crown Court heard Thomas had been involved in a feud between ‘rival groups’ involving Somalians living in the Broomhall area and young men from Pitsmoor and Burngreave.
He died in hospital an hour after being shot on December 21.
Jama Ahmed, 26, and Asif Yousaf, 33, both deny his murder.
The Ford Mondeo Mr Thomas was travelling in with friend Neshaun Ferguson had stopped at the junction to the Sheffield Parkway at around 10.15pm that night.
A man with his hood pulled around his face to cover it up got out of a Mitsubishi which had been following the Mondeo, went up to the Mondeo’s front passenger side window and fired three shots using a gun that appeared to have a silencer attached.
The first shot hit Mr Ferguson in his side, with the other two hitting Mr Thomas in his chest.
The shooting was witnessed by a shocked couple in a car behind the two vehicles.
The gunman got back in the Mitsubishi which was driven off at speed and abandoned at Ponderosa fields around five minutes later.
Mr Ferguson initially did not realise he had been shot and drove round the corner and came to a stop in a lay-by on the Parkway.
The court was told Mr Thomas was ‘gasping for breath’ and asked for an ambulance to be called.
But after suffering massive internal bleeding and going into cardiac arrest, he was pronounced dead at the Northern General Hospital an hour later.
Opening the prosecution case, Bryan Cox QC said the car used by Jordan’s killers was bought specifically for the attack just two hours before the murder.
He said the prosecution cannot prove the identity of the shooter but can link Ahmed to the purchase of the car and Yousaf’s DNA was found inside the abandoned car indicating that he was the driver.
Mr Cox QC said a feud between the two groups dated back to 2011 when James Knowles, the cousin of Jordan Thomas, killed a man called Mubarak Ali.
He said the feud was reignited following a confrontation between the groups outside the Forward nightclub on December 19, 2014 - two days before the shooting.
Mr Thomas had been out with friends at the club, which the Somalian group were banned from.
Mr Cox said some of the Somalian group - including Jama Ahmed, whose nickname is ‘Drama’ and was said to be a ‘prominent member’ of the group - went to the nightclub that evening.
He said: “Jordan Thomas went outside and there was a confrontation and the Somalian men were chased away and pursued to Broomhall where shots or a shot were fired by those pursuing the Somalian group.”
One of the Somalian group dropped a mobile phone during the incident, which was picked up by one of Mr Thomas’s friends.
Mr Cox said Ahmed made calls to the phone and wrongly believing he was speaking to Mr Thomas, started making threats about coming to his dead mother’s house to find him.
The friend of Mr Thomas did not identify himself but responded with comments about Mubarak Ali being in a ‘body bag’.
Mr Cox said that there were further conversations between the two men and Ahmed had believed he had been speaking to Mr Thomas.
He said that fearing he would be attacked, Mr Thomas went to Birmingham on December 20 and stayed there overnight, returning to Sheffield the following evening.
Mr Cox said that during the four-week trial, witnesses will tell the jury that Ahmed was seen on December 20 wearing a balaclava and carrying a gun looking for Jordan Thomas.
He said that CCTV will be shown to the jury of the Mitsubishi following the Mondeo Mr Thomas was in in the minutes before the killing.
He added that there was a ‘one in a billion’ DNA match of Yousaf found in the abandoned Mitsubishi.
Mr Cox said both of Yousaf’s parents gave false statements claiming he had been at home with them at the time of the murder.
Mr Cox said ‘old wounds’ were reopened by the nightclub incident, leading to the plan to kill Jordan Thomas that involved both Ahmed and Yousaf.
Ahmed, of Broomhall Place, and Yousaf, of Violet Bank Road, both deny murdering Jordan Thomas and attempting to murder Neshaun Ferguson.
Yousaf’s parents, Mohammed Yousaf, 61, and Tazeem Bi, 57, also both of Violet Bank Road, both deny attempting to pervert the course of justice.
The trial continues.
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