The majority of the crime is due to violence, antisocial behaviour, vehicle crime, and robbery. On 2 January 2003, gunmen shot at three innocent teenage girls who were celebrating the New Year in the [Birchfield] area of Aston. Two of the girls were killed and another was seriously injured. More than 18 bullets were fired from at least two weapons. Four men were later tried and found guilty of murder in March 2005. Marcus Ellis (the half-brother of one of the two dead girls), Nathan Martin and Michael Gregory were sentenced to life imprisonment with recommended minimum terms of 35 years on two charges of murder and three of attempted murder. A fourth man, Rodrigo Simms, received life with a recommended minimum of 27 years for the same crimes. A fifth defendant, Jermaine Carty, had walked free from court after being cleared of possessing a firearm. The four men convicted were members of a notorious local gang known as the Burger Bar Boys, who had been trying to gain revenge on members of their rival gang the Johnson Crew: a notorious local gang originating in the mid-1980s.
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