Drug dealing rapper admits shooting dead teenager Kimani Martin in Tividale

A drug dealing rapper has admitted shooting dead teenager Kimani Martin in Tividale.

Kisharne Campbell has admitted shooting Kimani Martin
Kisharne Campbell has admitted shooting Kimani Martin

During the murder trial at Birmingham Crown Court, Kisharne Campbell admitted pulling the trigger delivering the fatal shot after previously claiming "a fifth person" in the car was the shooter.

In his closing address, Campbell's defence barrister, Stan Reiz QC, revealed that his client pleading manslaughter during the trial had shocked his legal team.

He said: "Once the truth came out of his mouth he told nothing but the truth. He accepted he had been lying for 11 months, misleading his legal team, but he told you the truth, the ugly truth."

Kimani Martin was shot dead in last June

Campbell, 23, and Usman Amjad, 22, both of no fixed address but who previously lived in Sandwell, along with Luke Adams, 20, from Walsall, and Atif Khan, 25, from Park Lane, Tipton, are charged with murder. All deny the charges.

The court has heard that Kimani Martin, aged 18, befriended Campbell at a music studio, arranged to meet him and then kidnapped him and Adams at gunpoint. Adams was stuffed in the boot of a car as Martin ordered Campbell to take them to Adams' home to steal money.

Mr Reiz explained that Martin had stolen Campbell's distinctive "Kash" necklace which he wore in hip hop videos, and the mobile phone which was a drugs hotline.

Martin and his two associates then left Campbell on the road and parked the car in Tipton with Adams still in the boot, later to be released by Campbell. The pair then got in a VW Golf with Amjad and Khan and began searching for Martin. After spotting Martin near Tipton Sports and Social Club in a taxi, the Golf gave chase leading to Martin being shot dead.

Mr Reiz said: "They (Martin and two associates) had stolen thousands of pounds worth of money, jewellery, and a mobile phone, which is important to a drug dealer. Campbell wanted to get what was taken from him back, revenge could be planned later.

"Amjad phoned 1-2-1 Taxis to find out where those who had kidnapped Campbell were. If he wanted to be spiteful he would have accused one of the others of handing him the gun, instead he said he could not remember.

"He unlawfully killed Mr Martin, so he pleaded to manslaughter as he did not mean to kill him. Both vehicles were moving, he intended the shot to be a warning to stop the taxi to get his stuff back."

He added: "Mr Martin was sitting in the rear passenger seat, but the shot did not go sideways into the window but instead at an angle through the boot. It would take skill and experience to successfully aim and hit a target whilst moving."

The three other defendants claimed they were unaware Campbell would shoot Martin, believing he just wanted to recover his belongings.

Adams' defence barrister, Hossein Zahir, explained his client was "gullible" for going along with Campbell to meet Martin, which led to him stuffed in the boot of a car, taken to his Walsall home, beaten and robbed. While in the boot the vehicle was chased by police, "scaring" him.

Mr Zahir said: "Why did he get in a car with Campbell? Well, he did not want to be alone, in an area where those who attacked him were at large. He could not go home, his attackers knew where he lived.

"He followed the older man, he was hoping to distance himself from danger but he had gone from frying pan to the fire."

"He assumed the most would happen, Campbell would get his stuff back. He wanted no part of it, he never offered help. He told you he was scared and shocked and had never seen a gun before."

Mark George QC, defending Amjad, said: "Something remarkable happened in court that day (when Campbell confessed) when it suddenly became obvious that Amjad was not going to toe the party line and tell tell lies anymore.

"Amjad was prepared to out Campbell as the front seat passenger, running the risk of being called "a snitch and a grass" by those who see telling the truth in such a prerogative way. Campbell realised he could not maintain his ridiculous defence without the help of his friends."

He added: "There is no evidence or link that Amjad phoned or knew anyone at 1-2-1 Taxis as he was accused of, retribution can be swift when called a snitch."

Defending Khan, Gurdeep Garcha QC told the jury: "A fact in this case is that Kisharne Campbell killed Kishani Martin. I expect you will make short work of him. Then you will need to decide whether the prosecution convinced you the three other people in car committed murder."

Mr Garcha was finishing his closing comments on Tuesday and then Judge Melbourne Inman will give directions to the jury who will then retire to find verdicts for the four defendants.

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