Father & two sons convicted of killing Darren Smith after attack at phone shop in Shard End, Birmingham

From L-R: Lee, Luke and Lewis
From L-R: Lee, Luke and Lewis

Three men have been convicted of killing a man in broad daylight in Shard End, Birmingham earlier this year.

On 15 March, Darren Smith had visited a phone shop on Heath Way to buy a phone case, when he was ambushed by the men who repeatedly kicked and punched him. The 51-year-old, was also hit multiple times with a wrench.

Two Rolex watches were also stolen from Darren’s wrist and staff at the shop were threatened before the three men fled in their cars. Darren walked unsteadily out of the shop, before collapsing nearby.

Several members of the public gave Darren first aid until emergency services arrive, but he died from his injuries at the scene. Lee O’Brien and his two sons Luke and Lewis were arrested the following day (16 March) having fled to Torquay.

They had borrowed a car from a friend to travel down to Torquay in so that they could evade police, but they were arrested after West Midlands Police traced the car they were travelling in.

At Birmingham Crown Court on Tuesday (19 September) Lee O’Brien, 51, Luke O’Brien, 36 and Lewis O’Brien 31, all pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

They will now be sentenced on 16 November.

What has West Midlands Police said about the case?

Detective Inspector Michelle Thurgood from the Homicide Team, said: “We know that Lee, Luke and Lewis all knew Darren, but only they know why they targeted him that day.

“My thought’s remain with Mr Smith’s family at this distressing time, I hope that these pleas bring them some sense of justice being done.”

Darren’s family previously released this tribute: “We as a family are devastated at the loss of our son Darren.

“He was a caring man and was loved by all who knew him. He was tragically taken from us and this has left a huge void in our lives.”