Shooting victim allegedly had bounty on him

Police close the city centre bound side of the A61 at the junction with Leppings Lane
Police close the city centre bound side of the A61 at the junction with Leppings Lane
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A man shot by masked gunmen during a daylight car chase along busy Sheffield roads had ‘money on his head’, a court heard.

Jamie Howden, 25, was shot in the leg after the Seat Leon he was passenger in was chased by two gunmen in a VW Golf along Southey Green Road, Halifax Road and Penistone Road on January 20.

As the chase got to the junction with Leppings Lane and Penistone Road, the gunmen got out of the Golf and began firing at the fleeing Seat Leon.

Gavin Bennett, 35, of Maun Way, Firth Park, went on trial for attempted murder after being after being identified as the driver of the Golf. The prosecution say the incident was targeted attempt on the life of Mr Howden.

A jury at Sheffield Crown Court was shown footage from police interviews with the driver of the Seat Leon, Nathan Marples, today.

Mr Marples said he did not know why Mr Howden – who is his cousin – was targeted by the attackers. He said: “I’d heard he had some money on his head.”

Mr Marples said he picked up Mr Howden from his house on the day of the shooting with his friend Andy, before collecting a man called Adz, who was one of Jamie’s friends.

After taking Mr Howden to look at a phone in Hillsborough, Mr Marples said he saw Bennett, whom he ‘knew from the area’, pulling out of a junction onto Southey Green Road.

Mr Marples said: “I’ve seen the driver and knew straight away. My heart just sank, I knew what was going to happen... I drove.”

He added that he knew Bennett from growing up in the area and thought ‘they were going to kill us’.

At least four shots were fired during the chase, one of which struck Mr Howden in the leg after penetrating the car door.

After escaping along Herries Road, Mr Marples dropped Mr Howden off at Northern General Hospital with Andy. Adz then jumped into a taxi near the entrance and Mr Marples went to his mother’s, the court heard.

Bennett denies attempted murder. The trial continues.