Pair guilty of Rico murder

03/08/2012

Shakah Anderson, 30, and Rikel Adams, 27, have today been found guilty of the murder of Rico Gordon by a jury at Bristol Crown Court.

CPS Crown Advocate, Janine Wood, said: "These two ruthless men showed complete disregard for human life, as the CPS was able to demonstrate to the jury. 

"This was a very complex case from the outset and I would like to thank the police for their thorough and detailed investigation and the witnesses who came forward to give evidence.

"We pass our sincere condolences to Rico Gordon's family and thank them for their unwavering courage, dignity and support for this prosecution.  We hope the verdict and the sentences handed down today provide some measure of comfort for them."

Rikel Adams will serve a minimum custodial sentence of 35 years and Shakah Anderson a minimum of 32 years.

Rico, who was 21 and from London was shot dead on Stapleton Road in Bristol in the early hours of Sunday 3 July 2011 after the St Pauls Carnival.

Shakah Anderson was also found guilty of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life. Rickel Adams was found guilty of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life and two charges of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

During a five week trial at Bristol Crown Court the jury were shown more than 100 CCTV clips which had been painstakingly examined by the investigation team.

Detectives from Avon and Somersets Major Crime Investigation Team (MCIT) worked closely with the Metropolitan Polices Trident team from the early stages of the investigation and also used ballistics experts to examine the many bullets and casings left at the scene.

During the investigation 16 arrests were made, 97 statements were taken and more than 3,300 items were seized. A national media campaign for information was launched and a reconstruction was filmed by the BBCs Crimewatch.

Detective Superintendent Sue Scott from Avon and Somerset Police said: "This result is testament to the whole team - our own staff, the officers from the Met who worked with us on the inquiry and the Crown Prosecution Service but most of all Ricos family who have shown such courage in supporting our work throughout this investigation.

"I would like to reassure people that this was an isolated incident and Bristol is a safe place to live and work. Incidents such as this are very rare in our city but we continue to appeal for information in relation to firearms and those that carry them. As a result of this investigation more than nine firearms have been taken off the streets together with a large amount of ammunition.

"We are committed to tackling violent crime and bringing offenders to justice. Our work will continue in our communities and, with the support of Ricos family, through education - to ensure that those who think about carrying weapons think again."

 Paying tribute to her son, Anna Gordon said: "Rico was always happy; always smiling I dont know anyone that had a bad word to say about him. Just to be in the same room as Rico you felt privileged.

"I miss everything about him, his positivity, his love - he was everything a mother wanted her son to be. This has torn the whole family apart. Life will never be the same again. I have prayed every day that justice would be served. I could never forgive these people because to forgive you would have to forget and that would be impossible.

"I would say to anyone, dont pick up a gun, dont pick up a knife to take someone elses life. The consequences are indescribable. This is not life, it is not a future, all it brings is sadness and destruction. Do something positive with your lives."

Anyone with any information on firearms is asked to contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.