A nineteen-year-old man from South Norwood was among four sentenced to life imprisonment today (Thursday April 7, 2022) for murdering Daniel Laskos in Havering.
During the Old Bailey trial earlier this month the court heard how police were called to reports of a fight between armed groups of males at 6:41pm on Friday, 7 May last year outside a shop on Church Road, Harold Wood.
When officers and the ambulance crew arrived, members of the public were administering first aid to Daniel Laskos, who had a serious knife wound to his neck.
London’s Air Ambulance were also called, but despite the efforts of the public and emergency services, Daniel, aged just 16, was sadly pronounced dead at the scene.
After the verdict was delivered Detective Chief Inspector Dave Whellams of the Met’s Specialist Crime Command said they still did not know the motive behind the murder. But Joshua Kerr, 19, of South Norwood was convicted of murder and was jailed today to serve a minimum of 24 years the longest of the four life sentence handed down by the judge for Daniel’s murder.
A sixteen-year-old boy, who cannot be named, was sentence to serve a minimum of 14 years. Callum Hands, 20 from Dagenham was sentence to serve a minimum of 22 years, and Rakeem Green-Matthews, 19 from Romford was sentence to serve a minimum of 21 years.
Two other teenagers were found not guilty of murder or manslaughter at the trial.
DCI Whellams said: “This entire incident was captured on CCTV that my team has studied at length.
“The footage clearly showed Daniel Laskos standing on the pavement with a friend on Church Road when the suspects approached them. Pulling knives and a baton from their clothing they charged them. Daniel and his friend instinctively tried to back away, but were caught and stabbed in a targeted, frenzied attack.
“We still don’t know what the circumstances were that motivated this murder. What we do know is that a family is changed forever and continues to struggle to come to terms with their loss. Our thoughts are with them today.
“We also know that four young men will forfeit their futures as a result.
“As homicide detectives we see the effects of extreme violence as part of our daily professional lives, and the speed with which often minor disputes can escalate into extreme violence goes far beyond our comprehension.
“It is vital that the community, educators and police work together to stop this mindless and wholly needless loss of our young men’s lives. If you know someone who carries weapons or is involved in violent crime please do the right thing and tell police what you know – your actions could save a life.”
There are a number of ways that concerned citizens can provide information to police by dialling 101 or online at www.Met.police.uk.
If you have information that could help keep your community safe, but don’t want to speak to police, please contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. They do not ask your name and cannot trace your call or I.P address.
Any young people who have information about violence or knife crime, can visit www.fearless.org where they can pass on information anonymously – your I.P address will not be traced. Fearless is part of the Crimestoppers charity, and is also independent of the police.