Birmingham & Black Country

Mekel Sterling: Four jailed over drive-by shooting murder

Mekel Sterling Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Mekel Sterling, 36, was killed in a drive-by shooting

Two men have been jailed for murdering a man in a drive-by shooting on a Birmingham street.

Mekel Sterling was standing outside shops in Great Hampton Row, Hockley, last September when shots were fired from a MAC 11 sub-machine gun.

The 36-year-old father-of-four, who did not know his killers, died in hospital.

Kayne Robinson, 24, from Birmingham, and Darielle Williams, 23, from Dudley, were jailed for life for his murder and each must serve a minimum of 33 years.

They were convicted at Birmingham Crown Court on Wednesday.

Two others were also jailed, after admitting assisting an offender.

Devonte May, 23, of Victoria Road, Handsworth, and Geary Barnett, 19, of James Turner Street, Winson Green, were sentenced to three years and two and a half years respectively.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Kayne Robinson and Darielle Williams must serve a minimum of 33 years

The jury failed to reach a verdict on Wednesday on the murder charges May and Barnett were both facing.

The two reappeared in the court on Friday where they entered not guilty pleas to murder, but admitted assisting an offender.

They were sentenced along with Robinson, of Roseberry Street, Springhill, and Darielle Williams, of Attingham Drive, Dudley, following a six-week trial.

'Senseless killing'

Paramedics found Mr Sterling with a gunshot wound to his chest.

Police said his killers drove slowly down the road in a silver Volkswagen Golf before opening fire and speeding off. Robinson was the driver while Williams fired at Mr Sterling.

The shooting was thought to be in revenge for shots being fired at a group of men outside a fast food restaurant on Dudley Road the day before.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption The golf was seen speeding away after the shooting

Mr Sterling's family said their lives would never be the same.

"An innocent man had a precious life cut short by the act of these dangerous individuals," they said.

"Our family and friends have lost the most amazing person you could have ever met."

Emily Lenham, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said data analysis of Robinson and Williams' phones and CCTV footage proved they were together before and after the killing.

"This was a premeditated and senseless killing carried out by discharging a powerful MAC 11 submachine gun in a busy residential area."

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