Witness 'thought he would be shot after fatal shooting' of Jahmel Jones in Southampton

Jahmel Jones

Jahmel Jones

First published in News
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter

THE friend of a man shot dead in a Southampton flat has described the terror he felt at witnessing the shooting, a court heard.

Jason Hoitt was with Jahmel Jones when he was fatally shot twice at 69 St Mary's Street on the morning of April 20 last year.

Recorded police interviews given by Mr Hoitt were shown to jurors at Winchester Crown Court this morning.

An emotional Mr Hoitt told detectives the incident was "something you see in a film" and described in detail the moments leading up to Mr Jones, who he referred to by his nickname Lucky, being shot.

He said Mr Jones was shot and killed by a man with a braided hairstyle seconds after the pair entered the flat.

Mr Hoitt, a drink and drug user, said the man shot Mr Jones twice before he turned the gun onto him. He said two other men, who he described as "hazel eyes" and "wonky eye"' were also in the property.

He told detectives how he feared for his life and believed the gun could have jammed when pointed at him after he was referred to as a "witness", the court heard.

He said the three men then ran out of the block of flats via the back entrance.

Prior to the incident, Mr Hoitt said he bumped into Mr Jones outside a cafe on St Mary's Street on the morning of April 20.

He said he was with a friend called Jamie Cooper, who he stayed with the night before at his flat in Northam, Southampton.

He said: "I had a can of beer in my hand. He (Jamie Cooper) went off to speak to someone.

"As I was waiting I saw Lucky walk past.

"He saw me standing there and walked back. He said 'do me a favour and follow me. I have got a problem with a couple of people. I need you for back up.'"

"I'm following him and he's well ahead of me.

"Across the road there is a block of flats and a white woman was hanging out of the window. She shouted something and me and Lucky looked up but ignored her.

"I remember her saying 'they are up here' meaning the people Lucky wanted to see."

He said the pair entered the block of flats through the front entrance and went up a flight of stairs to get to the flat.

Mr Hoitt added: "He's opened the door and we both walk in. There was a tall, light skinned lad standing there and a youngish black guy with a wonky eye and maroon trainers.

"Then round the corner this guy walked round. He had braided hair. He had his hood up and as soon as he was round the corner all I can remember is a bang, he's shot the gun.

"There was another bang. I'm dazed and confused.

"My ears are ringing and Lucky has dropped to the floor. I remember the guy pointing the gun at me.

"I thought if they shot him here I'm a witness and they are going to shoot me.

"I'm dazed, I'm shocked. Lucky is on the floor and I've seen the blood.

"At that time I'm thinking he's dead.

"It's really disturbing. I thought it was going to be a confrontation with him and the black guy but this guy had every intention to kill him.

"I'm from London and I came here five years ago. You don't expect shootings like that in Southampton. I never thought I would be in the middle of it in Southampton."

Pierre Lewis, 20, of Castlenau, Barnes, Jemmikai Orlebar-Forbes, 20, of Cloudsdale Road, London, and Isaac Boateng, of Mill Farm Crescent, London, all deny murder.

They have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Rachel Kenehan, of Hewlett Road, London, denies conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, assisting an offender, and perverting the course of justice.

The trial continues.

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