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Teenage gun victim tells court about the moment he was shot

A teenage gun victim described the moment he was shot, and told the Supreme Court it was not the first time someone had tried to kill him.

Jahrockia Smith-Hassell recalled a friend saying: “You should leave, you should leave; something bad’s going to happen” after their group observed a lone man approach their gathering on Rambling Lane, Pembroke.

The 17-year-old, who was 16 on the night of March 25, last year, told Supreme Court this morning that he looked over his shoulder after the man passed him.

“I saw him pull a gun out from his jacket pocket,” Mr Smith-Hassell told Crown counsel Kirsty-Ann Kiellor. “Then he shot me in my back.”

He said he had seen the man’s face, and recognised him as Royunde Stevens Cyrus.

Mr Cyrus denies the charge of attempted murder. The 24-year-old Southampton resident is charged also with using a firearm to commit an indictable offence.

Mr Smith-Hassell continued: “I hit the ground. He shot and missed. Then he shot me again in the back. He shot again and missed, and the last shot hit me in the leg.”

The victim said he was able to flee from his attacker, and a friend called the police.

After three weeks in hospital, Mr Smith-Hassell said he was asked by police to identify his attacker from a series of photographs.

“I picked out the picture of Royunde,” he told the court.

Asked by Ms Kiellor how sure he had been, Mr Smith-Hassell replied: “One hundred percent sure.”

Ms Kiellor asked: “Why were you shot? Was this the first time you were in a situation like that?”

The witness said that about four months before the shooting, a man on Fenton’s Drive had threatened to stab him, and threatened to kill him and his older brother, Tafari.

“All of them just want to kill him,” he said.

Asked who had threatened his brother, he replied: “Parkside.”

Mr Hassell-Smith said his brother lived with his father on St Monica’s Road, and not at his mother’s home on Rambling Lane, because of threats made on his life.

The case continues.

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Published November 16, 2011 at 2:05 pm (Updated November 16, 2011 at 2:05 pm)

Teenage gun victim tells court about the moment he was shot

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