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Dwaine Haughton: Wolverhampton murder victim 'ambushed and shot in head in planned killing'

An armed gang ambushed and blasted a 24-year-old man to death from close range with a shotgun, a jury heard.

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Dwaine Haughton was aged 24 when he was shot in Wolverhampton

The murder of Dwaine Haughton had been painstakingly planned for a week before tragedy struck, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

The victim was the front-seat passenger in a Peugeot 207 driven by his cousin Barrington Clarke which came to a halt in Valley Road, Park Village, at 9.10pm on July 20.

Moments later a stolen grey Audi A7 on false plates pulled up alongside just a few feet away and at least one of the four occupants got out and fired several shots into the Peugeot hitting Mr Haughton in the head.

Police cordoned off the scene of the fatal shooting in Village Road

He suffered catastrophic brain injury and an “obliteration of the anatomy of the face,” said Mr Michael Burrows QC, prosecuting.

A passer by heard the grievously wounded victim’s cousin shouting “stay with me” as he reversed and sped off towards New Cross Hospital where he asked two police officers for help and medics rushed to offer assistance, it was said.

Mr Haughton was transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham where he was certified dead at 2.10am the following morning.

'A sitting target'

The motive for the murder remains unclear but Mr Burrows told the jury: “The intention of all those in the Audi is obvious. It was to kill. He was a sitting target.

"The gunman would not produce the gun and shoot in front of people he could not trust.”

Mr Haughton died in July 2018

The prosecutor alleged the four men involved were 22-year-old Montell Gray, 23-year-old Seamus Williams, 25-year-old Dwaine Smith, and 22-year-old Kurrum Guild.

The shooting was not caught on CCTV but police were able to piece together the movements of the Audi and its occupants through security camera footage, mobile phone use and the BMW allegedly driven by Guild which had a telematic device which stored details of where and when it had travelled, the court heard.

Switching cars

After the shooting the Audi was driven to Chainmakers Close, Bilston, where the gang switched to a silver Nissan Navara which went to Hackford Road, Lanesfield, where Guild had allegedly left his BMW.

He collected something there before they travelled to Raby Street in Wolverhampton city centre where Williams and Gray got out and hailed a taxi, it was claimed.

The police cordon in place

Smith and Guild travelled back to Hackford Road where the latter picked up his BMW and they both drove home, alleged Mr Burrows.

The Audi was torched the next day in Webb Street, Bilston where it was claimed Guild and Williams were seen getting out of the vehicle before it was set on fire.

Those involved blundered by parking in the view of a CCTV camera and had to return to the scene after the blaze had been extinguished by fire crews to collect the false plates they had forgotten to take off the vehicle, said the prosecutor.

Smith, of Chainmakers Close in Bilston, Williams, from Okemont Drive and Gray, of Springfield Road, both Wednesfield, and Guild, from Oakthorpe Gardens in Tividale, all deny murder, possession of a firearm and ammunition to endanger life and handling a stolen car.

Smith, Williams and Guild all deny arson.

The case continues.

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