An Old Bailey jury has seen dramatic CCTV footage of a Lewisham schoolboy’s last moments, after he was stabbed in the heart by a gang of schoolchildren.
Nicholas Pearton, 16, was stabbed in the back, piercing his heart, in Home Park, Sydenham, on May 5 last year. After staggering to a nearby restaurant seeking help, Nicholas died in his mother’s arms when she was called to the scene by his younger brother.
Edward Brown QC, prosecuting, said some of the schoolchildren were still wearing their school blazers and ties as they chased Nicholas with knives and other weapons. Minutes later, he said, Nicholas was dead, stabbed in the back and lying in a shop doorway.
Mr Brown said the group discarded their weapons after the stabbing and left the scene laughing and joking. “One was seen to hold a knife high above his head, as if bragging at what had just happened,” he added.
Six youths, one aged 14, one 15, two aged 16 and two now aged 17, are due to go on trial for the murder, which has been adjourned while the jury visits the scene of the crime. All six defendants are from south-east London and deny the murder, but cannot be identified for legal reasons.
Mr Brown said that while it was alleged one of the 17-year-olds stabbed Nicholas, all the boys had been acting together.
He said the incident occurred after a confrontation in the park between two rival gangs, the Shanks & Guns and the Black Mafia, also known as the Sydenham Boys. Three hours prior to the murder, Nicholas’ friend, a member of the Black Mafia, had been involved in a row at school with the alleged 17-year-old knifeman, a member of Shanks & Guns.
By the time Nicholas arrived at the park, his friends and the Black Mafia gang were gone. Mr Brown said: “He was left on his own and isolated in the park. In the eyes of the defendants however, he remained a member of the rival Black Mafia gang.”