UPDATE Tuesday 10th May

Today both men received their sentences after the death of Connor Smith.

Frye has been sentenced to life with a minimum of 30 years and 7 years for 2 counts of possession of a firearm & robbery.

Baillie has been sentenced to 20 years for manslaughter and 7 years for 2 counts of possession of a firearm & robbery.


Two men were found guilty of charges relating to the shooting of a Hawkesley teenager in October last year at Birmingham Crown Court yesterday (Friday 6th May).

Connor Smith
Connor Smith

Connor Smith, 19, was shot dead in an alleyway close to his home in Forde Way Gardens on October 8th, following a dispute over a bag of cannabis which belonged to Smith and his friend.

Earlier the same day, Leon Frye, 27 of Rodney Close (pictured above left), and Philip Baillie, 28 of Forde Way Gardens (pictured above right), had stolen the drugs from Smith at gunpoint.

After a series of confrontations between Smith and his friends and Frye and Baillie, the two groups had their final confrontation in the alleyway. The court heard that, when Frye reached for a gun, Smith reacted to try and stop him and stabbed him in the stomach.

Frye shot Conor twice – once in the arm and once in the left side of his chest before both groups fled, leaving Connor wounded. Smith died at the scene.

After an intensive police search and numerous other arrests, Frye and Baillie were finally arrested at a remote address near Coventry in the early hours of October 12th.

Following a five week trial, Frye was found guilty of murder, two counts of possession of a firearm and robbery. Baillie was found guilty of robbery, two counts of possession of a firearm and manslaughter.

Both will be sentenced on Tuesday 10th May.

A third man charged, Marcus Jones, aged 27, of Gildas Avenue, was found not guilty of all charges.

Detective Inspector Warren Hines, from West Midlands police CID, stressed the dangers of carrying a firearm. He said: “It is such a waste that Connor has lost his life over such a trivial dispute between the two groups.

“This case demonstrates how incredibly dangerous it is to carry a gun on our streets, guns are designed to kill and they usually do. There is no place in society for those who chose to arm themselves with firearms. As a result of this incident a young man has lost his life and two others are now facing a considerable spell behind bars.

“Connor was just a teenager with his whole life ahead of him and that has been cruelly taken away, my thoughts are with his family and friends.”

Following recent events, West Midlands Police is committed to tackling gun crime offences in Birmingham. Carrying a gun will face a minimum of five years behind bars.

DI Hines added: “The public are our eyes and ears in our communities and we would ask anyone with information about people carrying guns to get in touch with us in confidence. By working together we can help to rid the streets of these deadly weapons and the people who carry them.”

Anyone with any information on gun crime in the community is asked to call West Midlands Police on 101. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111



  1. a prat with a gun shoots dead a prat with a knife,all over a drug that’s being sensibly regulated to minimize harm in other countries. what a waste.


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