A 17-year-old boy who jumped out of a taxi to chase and stab his 16-year-old schoolboy victim in Walthamstow, East London, has been convicted of murder
A teenager who jumped out of a taxi to chase and stab a schoolboy has been convicted of murder, according to the Metropolitan Police.
The 17-year-old, who was 16 at the time of the attack on May 5, was found guilty by a jury at London’s Snaresbrook Crown Court on Friday of murdering Renell Charles. Unable to be named because of his age, the teenager was also found guilty of having possession of a knife.
The victim, 16-year-old Renell, was a pupil as Kelmscott School in in Walthamstow, East London. He was killed shortly after the end of the school day in what police described as a “brutal attack.”
At around 4pm, Renell was sat at bus stop on a busy road with friends when his killer approached him. Police said there was a brief verbal altercation, with the victim trying to run away. However, he was chased down and stabbed twice.
They added he was lying defenceless on the ground the second time he was stabbed. As his attacker fled the scene, Renell collapsed and died a short time later.
Police say his attacker took deliberate steps to evade capture, such as immediately changing his clothes and swapping sim cards. The teenager stayed in Clapton after the murder to avoided police who went to his his home in Newham the following day.
In the early hours of May 8, he attended Forest Gate police station claiming to be confused as to why police had visited his house. He was arrested on suspicion of murder and charged later that day.
While he first told police “no comment,” the defendant claimed he was in fear of the victim and acted in self-defence. The 17 year-old is now due to be sentenced at the same court on March 14.
After the verdict, Detective Chief Inspector Mark Rogers said: “The defendant – just a child himself – subjected Renell to a brutal attack over a minor dispute on a busy road in view of countless witnesses. This is yet another example of a willingness by some to carry and use knives to resolve issues with seemingly no care or thought for the consequences.
“Such senseless acts of violence will never cease to shock us all, and in this case made all the more tragic given Renell was so young. The defendant’s attempt to justify his actions as an act of self-defence were contradicted by both CCTV and witnesses, both of which confirmed that he chased Renell before stabbing him.
He added: “I thank the jury for rightly seeing through his lies. My thoughts today are with Renell’s family and loved ones. Nothing will ease their pain, but I hope it is of some comfort to them that his killer has been brought to justice.”