Family pay tribute to woman who died after Brixton concert crush | London

The family of Rebecca Ikumelo, who died after a crowd crush at a concert in Brixton at the O2 Academy Brixton, have paid tribute to the mother of two for her “care, kindness and love”.

In a statement released through the Metropolitan police, her family said: “Rebecca was a graduate of nursing. She was an adorable mother of two children who loved working with kids.

“She was well respected in the family for her care, kindness and love. Her parents call her Tosin (short for Oluwatosin) meaning ‘lord is worthy’.”

Ikumelo, 33, from Newham, east London, was one of three people critically injured after fans attempted to gain entry without tickets to a show by the Nigerian artist Asake at the south London venue on Thursday.

Another family member, Temiope Olodo, wrote on Twitter: “My favourite Niece, Rebecca Ikumelo, died today as a result of injuries sustained from @asakemusik Concert.

“This is a great loss for the Olodo and Ikumelo family. I can’t hold back my tears.”

Author Toni Tone also paid tribute to Ikumelo, saying: “She was a beautiful woman who radiated positive energy and was dedicated to being the best version of herself for her kids. She also did so much to raise awareness of autism spectrum disorder.”

The Metropolitan police released a picture of Ikumelo on Saturday after her death in hospital.

A postmortem will be held on Sunday.

Two other women, aged 21 and 23, who were also at the concert on Thursday remain in a critical condition.

Asake said he was “devastated” and “overwhelmed with grief” by her death. “My sincerest condolences to her loved ones at this time. Let us please keep her family in our prayers. I have spoken to them and will continue to do so,” he said.

“My team and I are still awaiting the full debrief back from the venue management and the police to determine what exactly led to all the disruption caused and ultimately to Rebecca’s passing.

“If you have any relevant information relating to this please do reach out to the Metropolitan police.”

Florence Eshalomi, the Labour MP for Vauxhall, said: “I visited the site again this morning and I’ve been dreading this news ever since the incident, hoping it would never come.

“This is such a tragic loss of a young 33-year-old with so much life ahead of her, and my thoughts and prayers to Rebecca Ikumelo’s family and friends.

“There are clearly many questions about how this was allowed to happen and it is important that these are investigated comprehensively by the authorities. I remain in regular contact with the police and Lambeth council as this situation unfolds.”

On Friday, Ch Supt Colin Wingrove, the policing commander for Lambeth and Southwark, said: “I’d like to extend my sympathies to all those who have been affected. Having seen some of the really upsetting images on social media, our thoughts are with them.

“An urgent investigation is currently under way, led by detectives from our specialist crime command, and cordons remain in place as officers continue to work at the scene.

“This is still a fast-moving and evolving picture and we are working to establish the events that led up to the incident.

“We are also aware of a vast amount of footage on social media and of course this will be examined as part of the investigation along with footage from officers’ body-worn video cameras.”

He said police had set up an online page for the submission of photos and videos, and urged anyone with information to come forward.

Asake gig in Brixton abandoned after suspected crowd crush – video reportAsake gig in Brixton abandoned after suspected crowd crush – video report

The O2 Academy Brixton said in a statement on Twitter: “All at O2 Academy Brixton and Academy Music Group are deeply saddened by the news of the tragic death of Rebecca Ikumelo.

“We send our heartfelt condolences to Rebecca’s family and friends, and our thoughts are with everyone affected by this devastating news at this extremely difficult time.”

The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said on Saturday: “I am heartbroken by the tragic death of Rebecca Ikumelo, who has very sadly died following the awful events on Thursday night in Brixton.

“Rebecca had her whole life ahead of her and on behalf of all Londoners, I would like to extend my condolences to her family, friends and loved ones at this extremely difficult time.

“My thoughts remain with everyone affected by this dreadful incident. It’s vital that the investigation into what happened concludes as soon as possible. City Hall are in contact with venues and authorities across London to ensure nothing like this happens again.”

The Met launched an investigation on Friday into what it said was an “extremely distressing” incident.

Police found a number of people with “injuries believed to have been caused by crushing” after being called to the venue at about 9.35pm on Thursday.

Asake, whose real name is Ahmed Ololade, was recently nominated for BBC Radio 1’s Sound of 2023 award, for artists breaking through in the UK.

He had posted on Twitter before the gig asking fans not to come to the venue unless they had a valid ticket.

The concert was the third of three sold-out dates at the 4,921-standing capacity venue and concluded a run of UK dates.

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