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I saw motorcyclists leave shooting scene — witness

A witness told Supreme Court he saw two men on a motorcycle speeding away from the scene of a deadly shooting.

Jahkeo LeShore, 20, and Darrion Simons, 32, have both denied the premeditated murder of 26-year-old David Clarke Jr and using a firearm to commit the offence.

Mr Clarke was fatally shot on April 17, 2011 while riding a motorcycle along North Shore Road by the entrance to Bandroom Lane in Devonshire. The court heard that he was hit by two bullets, one which passed through his shoulder and a second, fatal shot which struck his head.

Prosecutors have suggested that the shooting was retaliation for the murder of Mr LeShore's brother, Jahmiko, who was killed six weeks earlier. They claim Mr LeShore's DNA was found on a nearby abandoned motorcycle, while Mr Simons was linked to the attack by both DNA and keys found near the scene of the crime.

A Mission Lane resident told the court that on the evening of the shooting, he was at home with his wife and son, who had stopped by for a visit. At around 10pm his son left, and the couple started to watch a television programme. They then heard a series of explosions from outside.

“All we heard was bang, bang, bang,” he said. “Everything went crazy. I thought it was in my neighbour's yard.”

He said his wife ran out of the house, despite him telling her to stay inside, while he looked through a window onto Mission Lane. As he did so, he heard what sounded like a motorbike racing through the area with its stand scraping along the road.

“That's when I realised it was going up the hill. It came across my window and my gate,” he said. “It sounded like it was coming as fast as it could. I saw the bike and two people. They seemed as if they were going to make a right turn, but one made a gesture to go [to the right] and they went that way.”

He told the court he couldn't recognise either of the people on the bike, their skin colour or their gender, but he accepted that he told police the rider was wearing a black, yellow and white jacket while the pillion passenger wore a red jacket.

Once the vehicle had passed, he told the court he ran after his wife, who he found with their son on Bandroom Lane. While his wife returned home, he continued down the hill to see what had happened.

When he reached the bottom of the hill, he said he saw a man and a motorcycle laying in the middle of the road, with one of his neighbours attempting to help him.

He told the court that a crowd of people had gathered in the area and he was surprised to see a dark-skinned man taking a photograph of the victim with his phone. The witness said he remained at the scene until police arrived and asked the crowd to back away from the scene.

The court also heard the evidence of Detective Constable Steven Palmer of the Forensic Support Unit, who attended the scene later that evening. He told the court that he recovered a Blackberry phone, a helmet and a helmet visor from the ground near Mr Clarke's body, but was unable to find any shell casings in the area.

Det Con Palmer said he was called back to the area at around 1am to recover a pair of keys on a key chain, which were found behind a wall on a Mission Lane property, and photograph what appeared to be scrape marks on Mission Lane.

During the course of the investigation Det Con Palmer told the court he photographed a black motorcycle which had been seized by officers, collecting fingerprints, DNA swabs and gunshot residue (GSR) stubs from the vehicle. He also attended Mr Clarke's autopsy, photographing two holes in Mr Clarke's right shoulder and collecting a metal slug, recovered from the victim's head.

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Published July 29, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated July 29, 2014 at 1:08 am)

I saw motorcyclists leave shooting scene — witness

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