Stephen Lawrence detectives will not face charges, review concludes

Four former detectives who oversaw the initial investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence will not be charged, a review has concluded.

Mr Lawrence, 18, was murdered by a gang of racist attackers in southeast London as he made his way home with a friend in April 1993.

Only two of his killers - Gary Dobson and David Norris - have ever been brought to justice.

Last year, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) considered whether or not to charge four former Metropolitan Police detectives with misconduct over the failings of the investigation.

In July last year, it announced the three former superintendents and one former detective inspector would not face prosecution.

That decision was challenged by Mr Lawrence's parents, under the Victims' Right to Review (VRR) scheme.

But a fresh review, carried out by a prosecutor who was independent of the original review, has now upheld that decision.

Rosemary Ainslie, head of the CPS's Special Crime Division, said: "Following our decision in July 2023 not to bring criminal charges against four police officers involved in the initial six weeks of the investigation into Stephen's murder, we received a request to review the decision under the Victims' Right to Review (VRR) scheme.

"An extensive review of that decision, which involved an independent prosecutor re-examining a substantial amount of evidence and material in the case, has now been completed.

"Offences of misconduct in public office were reconsidered, but the review upheld the original decision not to bring any criminal charges against the four officers in the case.

"We understand this news will be extremely disappointing for Stephen's family and friends, and the CPS has offered to meet with close family members to explain our reasoning in further detail."

The head of the Met has previously said the investigation into the 1993 killing may never progress because the original inquiry did "such a bad job".

Sir Mark Rowley admitted errors made by detectives caused irreparable damage.