Man guilty of fatal shooting less than year after being cleared over knife death

Denzel Kwateng was found guilty of the manslaughter of Tyrese Miller who was shot dead in Mitcham, south London, in April 2023.

Ellie Ng
Thursday 30 May 2024 17:21 BST
Drug dealer Denzel Kwateng shot 22-year-old Tyrese Miller in the chest (PA)
Drug dealer Denzel Kwateng shot 22-year-old Tyrese Miller in the chest (PA) (PA Archive)

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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas

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A man has been found guilty of a fatal shooting less than a year after being cleared of another killing.

In April 2023, 22-year-old Tyrese Miller was shot in the chest at close range.

Drug dealer Denzel Kwateng has been cleared of the murder but convicted of manslaughter after the jury deliberated for more than 41 hours.

In 2022, the 22-year-old was cleared over the fatal stabbing of 17-year-old Denardo Samuels-Brooks following an Old Bailey trial.

At second his trial, Kwateng claimed in his defence that he had only pointed a gun at Mr Miller as a prank when it went off without him pulling the trigger.

A jury also found Kwateng, of New Addington, south London, guilty of possession of a firearm and ammunition with intent to endanger life, and perverting the course of justice.

Co-defendants Kavaun Morrison, 19, and Manuel Paulo, 20, from Tooting; were acquitted of murder and possession of a firearm and ammunition with intent to endanger life.

Ky-mani Elliott, 21, from Lewisham; and Azariah James-Gulston, 21, from Croydon; were cleared of perverting the course of justice after they were accused of assisting in the destruction of a Toyota car used in the killing.

Cheick Cisse, 39, from Croydon, and a 17-year-old, who cannot be identified because of his age, were convicted of possession of a firearm and ammunition with intent to endanger life.

A sentencing hearing will take place on July 4.

Kwateng had originally been arrested over the murder of Denardo, who was found mortally injured in Prentis Road, Streatham, south London, on June 10 2021.

At an earlier trial, Kwateng admitted having an offensive weapon but claimed he stabbed Denardo in “self defence”.

A jury had deliberated for 16 hours to find Kwateng and three others not guilty of his murder in May 2022.

Less than a year later, Mr Miller was fatally shot with a shotgun at close range in Mitcham, south London.

The prosecution claimed the killing was motivated by revenge in retribution for the stabbing of a man in south London last April 3.

When they got to Mitcham, they drove after a young man named Tyrese Miller and when they caught up with him, they shot and killed him

Bill Emlyn Jones KC, prosecutor

Having survived, the victim – who cannot be named for legal reasons – did not want police involved and instead went to his friends who swiftly responded, jurors heard.

In just two-and-a-half hours, Kwateng got a gun while Morrison and Paulo fetched a stolen car on false plates.

They travelled across south London towards the area where their friend was stabbed, jurors were told.

Prosecutor Bill Emlyn Jones KC said: “When they got to Mitcham, they drove after a young man named Tyrese Miller and when they caught up with him, they shot and killed him. He was shot in the chest with a shotgun from close range.”

Mr Emlyn Jones said it was clear that Mr Miller had not been involved in the stabbing and had been enjoying a night out in a pub with friends at the time.

After the shooting, the car was set alight on playing fields, jurors heard.

The 17-year-old youth and Cisse collected the gun but were caught by police with it in the back of an Uber, the court was told.

Giving evidence, Kwateng said he did not know the gun was loaded and only pointed it at the victim “to scare him”.

He told jurors about his earlier acquittal, saying the case had involved a knife fight in June 2021 in which he was injured in the shoulder and another young man died.

Kwateng told jurors: “Because I was acquitted of murder I was getting attacked every time I bumped into them. I would get attacked and chased.”

He said that the people chasing him had knives and one of the attacks led to him being injured in the armpit.

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