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Teenagers jailed for 'unprovoked and callous' shooting that paralysed 13-year-old boy

Three teenagers have been jailed for life after shooting and paralysing a 13-year-old boy.

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The 'unprovoked and callous' attack on the 13-year-old took place in an underpass. Photo: SnapperSK

The attack, which took place in the underpass at Hockley Circus, Birmingham, has been described as "unprovoked and callous".

The 13-year-old boy and his friends had been in the city and were on their way to get food when he was attacked just before 7pm on November 18.

Three teenagers, who were convicted in August have now been jailed for life.

L-R: Edwards, Anderson
Tafique Thomas

Zidann Edwards of Ford Street, Birmingham and Diago Anderson, of no fixed address, both aged 20, have been sentenced to 17 and 18 years respectively for attempted murder.

Tafique Thomas, aged 17, no fixed address, was sentenced to 16 years and eight months for attempted murder and possession of a firearm.

Following sentencing, the mother of the teenage boy said: "These cowards didn’t even ask my son a simple question, they just ran him down and shot my 13-year-old in his back, like he was nothing.

"But my son is strong, strong like a lion and no weapon formed against him will ever prosper."

During investigations, police found CCTV evidence which showed a car travelling along the A41 before stopping abruptly on a service road. The three got out.

The 13-year-old boy and his friends were then chased into the underpass and within seconds a home-made shotgun, known as a slam gun, was fired, shooting him in the back and leaving him paralysed.

Detective Inspector Michelle Cordell, Force CID, said: “The unprovoked and callous actions of these three young men has changed the life of an innocent boy forever.

"The events of that evening are simply heartbreaking – it did not need to happen and I am deeply saddened by the fear the young boy must have felt before being so seriously injured.

The slam gun (left) and handgun recovered by officers. Photo: West Midlands Police

"Gun crime is so damaging, there are never any winners. I hope the outcome today sends a really clear message to anyone engaging in gang or gun crime. It’s a serious offence for which you will be punished.

"While no sentence can ever change the tragic events of that day, I hope that it provides some comfort to the boy and his family as they continue to rebuild their lives.

"My team have worked tirelessly with internal and external colleagues and partners to gather and present the evidence in this case.

Slam Gun

"Their collective hard work and dedication has helped achieve justice for the young boy and his family.

"Our primary focus is always to prevent these incidents from happening, but sadly we do continue to see gun violence on our streets.

"We need our communities to come together to help us in our fight against gun and gang-related crime."