A suspect accused of playing a part in the murder of Jordan Thomas said members of a Somali gang ordered him to change his clothes hours after the shooting.
Asif Yousaf told a jury at Sheffield Crown Court that two men took him to a flat in Broomhall with the promise of trying a new batch of drugs early on Monday, December 22 – hours after Mr Thomas had been shot dead.
Yousaf, aged 33, said: “They asked me if I had the same clothes on that I wore that same evening and then they told me to remove my clothes and for me to put these new ones on.”
Yousaf said one of the men told him: “Keep quiet or you know what will happen.”
The defendant later told the court the threats to ‘keep quiet’ related to him buying a red Mitsubishi Shogun that was used to track down Mr Thomas before a masked gunman got out of the car and shot him dead on Derek Dooley Way at around 10.15pm the previous night.
Prosecutor Bryan Cox QC said: “Did you not ask why they wanted you to take your clothes off?”
Yousaf replied: “I was scared, I didn’t ask.”
Mr Cox responded: “Can I suggest that this was a de-brief for you all to get your heads together and dispose of the evidence after the shooting?”
Yousaf answered: “No, that is not correct, I was scared. I didn’t ask why they wanted my clothes, I just wanted to go home.
“I went round to test the drugs like they said – I wouldn’t have gone if I knew why I was going round.
“They tricked me, it’s why I’m stood here now.”
Mr Thomas was shot dead at the traffic lights on Derek Dooley Way, near the junction to Sheffield Parkway.
Yousaf admits agreeing to buy the murder vehicle under a false name in return for ‘£30/£40’ worth of crack cocaine but refuted claims put to him by Mr Cox in cross examination that he knew it was going to be used in the murder. Yousaf said: “I was the only one that didn’t know what was going on. I was using drugs a lot at that time, I didn’t think deeply as to why they wanted me to get the car for them, I was more interested in getting the drugs.”
Jama Ahmed, aged 26, of Broomhall Place, and Yousaf, of Violet Bank Road, both deny murdering Mr Thomas and attempting to murder Neshaun Ferguson.
Yousaf’s father, Mohammed Yousaf, 61, also of Violet Bank Road, denies attempting to pervert the course of justice.
The trial continues.