Friend heard five shots as he fled Sheffield park

Father-of-two Grant Bodell,  Windy House Lane, Manor, was found dead on June 21, 2014
Father-of-two Grant Bodell, Windy House Lane, Manor, was found dead on June 21, 2014
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A man who was with murdered dad Grant Bodell during his final moments said he heard five gunshots after running away from shadowy figures in a Sheffield park.

Father-of-two Grant Bodell, aged 23, was shot to death in Manor Fields Park in June 2014 after he became implicated in a feud between two gangs.

Yesterday, Sheffield Crown Court heard Mr Bodell was not able to escape the gunmen as a serious bike accident the year before had left him unable to run.

In the hours prior to his death, Mr Bodell had been out drinking with two friends, brothers Corrie and Christopher Allen.

The court heard there was bad blood between Corrie Allen and one of the defendants, Marvis Smith.

In the hours prior to the murder, a confrontation between the Allen brothers and associates of Marvis Smith had resulted in Corrie Allen firing a sawn-off shotgun in the car park of the Embassy Club, in Mansfield Road, the jury was told.

Mr Allen is currently serving a prison sentence for this offence.

After the incident at the Embassy Club, the court heard Mr Bodell went with the Allen’s to their mother’s home, which is close to Manor Fields Park.

Mr Allen said that after buying cocaine from another address nearby, the three started to walk back through the park. This was at around 2am. He said that when they got to around ten feet away from the exit, he saw at least five figures.

He said: “They stopped and looked at us. I braced for a second and then said ‘run, get out of here fast’.”

When Adrian Waterman, prosecuting, asked Mr Allen who he thought the gunmen were, he named three of the defendants – Marvis Smith, Torrington Smith and Brendon McFarlane – as well as some of their associates.

Mr Waterman said: “Given what had happened at The Embassy and given who you thought it was that night, where were you heading when you ran?”

Mr Allen said: “Back down to get the gun.”

He said the gun had been placed in bushes on the park after the earlier shooting.

As he arrived at the hiding place, with his brother close behind, Mr Allen said they heard five gunshots.

Mr Allen said they found Mr Bodell seriously injured in the park and his brother called 999 while he went to hide the shotgun in a garden nearby. The court heard the gun Mr Allen fired has never been recovered by police.

Marvis Smith, 30, of Park Grange Road, Norfolk Park, Torrington Smith, 26, of Samuel Close, Norfolk Park, Stevin Pierre, 24, of Waterslacks Close, Woodhouse, and Brendon McFarlane, 22, of Hyde Park Terrace, Park Hill, all deny murder.

The trial continues.