On July 22, 2019, Danovan Jones and his brother Oliver Jones, drove to Hitchin to meet Emmanuel Munangatire in an area between Desborough Road and Maylin Close, to resolve a drug debt.
The Jones brothers were armed with a sawn off shotgun and Munangatire was armed with a handgun.
The meeting, which took place at 3.20pm, less than 200 metres from Purwell Primary School, did not go well and resulted in both parties firing their weapons at each other.
Munangatire successfully fired the 9mm hand gun at least three times and the Jones brothers fired the shotgun at least once.
Bullets from the guns were found on the ground and also embedded in parked vehicles. Amazingly no one was hit.
The three men then went their separate ways, but a quick and intense police investigation lead to all three being arrested a short time later.
Two further men, Nathan Mead and Michael Frimpong, were arrested on the 25 July, after driving with Mungangatire’s hand gun to a pub on the outskirts of Tring. Here the gun was handed to a third man – Shah Ali.
Again fast time police work resulted in all three being arrested within hours of the gun being handed over.
Oliver Jones, Emmanuel Munangatire and Michael Frimpong pleaded guilty at early court hearings at the end of 2019.
Danovan Jones, Nathan Mead and Shah Ali pleaded not guilty and went forward to trial at Luton Crown Court in February 2020.
Detective Inspector Angela Griffiths said: “This was a truly shocking incident and it was a miracle that no one was seriously injured.
"These men showed a total disregard for human life. They fired at each other in a residential road, in the middle of the day and at a time when the nearby school would be finishing.
“Our teams worked round the clock to track them down and get them off the streets, in what was a dynamic and fast paced investigation.
"These are clearly very dangerous men and we are delighted with the outcome of the trial. I hope this sends a very clear message to those who think it is acceptable to not only carry firearms, but to use them.”
Oliver Jones, 39, from Russell Rise in Luton, was charged with possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life. He was sentenced to 14 years and 3 months and was also given a five year extended licence.
Danovan Jones, 23, from Highover Way in Hitchin, was charged with possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and was sentenced to 13 years in prison.
Nathan Mead, 37, from Haylands Way in Bedford, was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of ammunition without a firearm certificate. He was sentenced to six years in prison.
Shah Ali, 35, from Seagull Lane, London, was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of ammunition without a firearm certificate. He was sentenced to seven years and six months.
Michael Frimpong, 19, from Charnwood Avenue in Bedford, was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of ammunition without a firearm certificate. He was sentenced to one year and ten months.
Emmanuel Munangatire, 21, from Abbey Grove in Sandy, awaits sentence at Northampton Crown Court in August for multiple offences, including possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.