The grief-stricken father of a teenager who was accidentally killed during disturbances in Lozells last night criticised the people who left his son to die as they ran away from the police.
Gordon James was speaking after Dowaine Phillip Maye was sent to prison for eight years for shooting 18-year-old Aaron James on the street in Newtown where the pair both lived.
Maye had been carrying a semi-automatic handgun which went off accidentally when the pair collided as they attempted to flee from a police riot van which had turned into the road, Birmingham Crown Court was told.
The shooting happened in the early hours of October 24 on Melbourne Avenue, less than a mile from where rioting had broken out in Lozells two days earlier.
Maye (19) had pleaded guilty to manslaughter and possessing an offensive weapon at an earlier hearing.
Sentencing him, Judge Alistair McCreath said Maye had not intended to harm his friend, who he had known since he was 14.
But he said he had gone onto the streets with the weapon, ready to participate in any violence should it arise.
The judge said: "The material before me makes it impossible for me to accept you had it for a purpose unconnected with the civil disturbance.
"I accept you did not take it with you to cause injury or death but rather as an act of youthful bravado."
He continued: "Those who take loaded guns onto the streets and use them to cause death or serious injury, in circumstances where they intend to do that, must inevitably face very long sentences indeed. Those people like you who bring guns onto the streets in circumstances in which you caused the death - unintentionally but utterly recklessly - must equally face lengthy sentences, albeit shorter than for those who kill intentionally."
Timothy Raggatt QC, prosecuting, said that Maye had "almost certainly bumped into his friend" when the safety catch was not on the weapon.
He said: "The effect of the collision was to cause trigger pressure on the finger and the prosecution accept an involuntary act caused the gun to fire. In one sense, this was an absolutely freak event."
After the hearing Gordon James said he was "pleased" that Maye had come forward and admitted his guilt.
However, he criticised the teenager for not telling police the whereabouts of the gun and his son's friends for leaving him lying in the road with gunshot wounds.
He said: "I'm pleased Dowaine came forward and admitted what he did but I'm still disappointed that he has never told the police where the gun was.
"The gun is still out there and has got the potential to be used again to harm.
"I am also amazed and disappointed that people who say they are Aaron's friends, who were with him on the night, just did not come forward and tell the police what had happened and left him on his own on the street to die."
Maye's defence barrister, David Crigman QC, told the court his client had spoken with Gordon James the day after the shooting and confessed his crime and had always shown "absolute contrition".