Aarron McKoy murder suspect Dean ‘Bungz’ Smith tells court he fled gunshots outside New Year’s Eve party
A rapper charged with murder following a New Year’s Eve party told the Old Bailey he had spent the evening playing peacemaker, and fled the sound of gunshots outside the club.
Dean Smith, 26, of Lordship Road, Stoke Newington, is accused of killing Aarron McKoy, outside Clerkenwell House Wine Bar, Hatton Wall, Clerkenwell, on January 1.
He told the court he was outside the club shortly before four in the morning, after a night marred by scuffles between men from different parts of Hackney.
Smith claimed he spent much of the evening asking childhood friend Ricky Walkington, who was stabbed inside the club, for “peace” and “no problems tonight”.
When the arguments spilled onto the road outside, Smith said he intervened “to stop him [Mr Walkington] doing something silly”.
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The court heard Smith was captured on CCTV bending to pick up an item before fleeing along with several other men.
The prosecution had previously claimed the footage showed him dropping a gun, causing it to go off, but Smith insisted the item was his phone.
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Smith twice denied having a gun and said he fled in the opposite direction after hearing a loud bang when he bent down.
He said: “My heart was racing, and I was just trying to get away.”
Smith told the court he fell after crashing into some bollards, at which point he heard another gunshot.
He said: “I heard a loud bang right next to my head. It sounded closer than the one before. I ran off in the opposite direction, back towards the club.”
He then returned to his car, where he met co-defendant Perrie Dennis, who told him someone had been killed. Mr McKoy, who had been celebrating his birthday with twin brother Lee, was gunned down in what the prosecution called gang violence.
Smith is said to have pulled the trigger, while Perrie Dennis, 22, of Thornbury Close, Newington Green; Osman Mohammed, 23, of Homerton Road, Hackney; Daniel Oyetoro, 27, of Charlbury Crescent, Romford and Jack Nichols, 21, and Ceon Hewitt, 22, of the High Street, Wickford, are also charged with the murder.
Smith, giving evidence for the first time last week, admitted being heavily drunk after consuming large amounts of vodka and smoking cannabis at another venue.
He then let a friend drive his car to the Clerkenwell club, while he threw up out of the window.
He admitted to the court that he had been a drug dealer in the past and had prior convictions including a three-year prison sentence for the possession of heroin with intent to supply.
The rapper, who goes by the street name Bungl or Bungz after the brown bear in children’s TV show Rainbow, a reference to his weight.
He said he had been offered a �60,000 record deal by label Universal, but turned it down because it was not a good enough offer.
He was setting up a cleaning company at the time of the murder, but told the court he still dreamed of getting a number one single and buying his mum a house.
He said the Lordship Boys, described by the prosecution as a gang, were just “a group of friends who grew up together”. He added: “It’s a gang in some people’s perspective, but not my perspective. I’m very proud of where I grew up.”
The trial continues.