Wandsworth stabbing: Toddler sees aftermath of horror knife attack that left boy, 15, dead

John Dunne and Anthony France
·3-min read
<p>The toddler watches on as paramedics and police battle to save the victim</p> (Claude Atcheba)

The toddler watches on as paramedics and police battle to save the victim

(Claude Atcheba)

A boy aged 15 was killed in a double stabbing in south London — as a toddler inside a supermarket watched paramedics desperately trying to save a victim.

The girl, aged about two, had her face pressed up against the glass as she watched the horror outside, before her mother realised what was going on and scooped her up.

Police officers on patrol had come across a fight near the Southside shopping centre in Wandsworth shortly before 5pm yesterday.

Two teenagers were wounded, although Scotland Yard initially said there were three victims. One died in hospital from his injuries. The other boy, also 15, remains in hospital but their condition is not life-threatening.

A supermarket worker said: “It was a horrible thing for that little girl to see. The boy injured outside Sainsbury’s was in a terrible way. The paramedics worked so hard on him giving CPR. Loads of people were still shopping. Staff were trying to do whatever they could to help.”

Another witness said: “It was totally shocking. It was right outside the store. There was a group of other boys looking on and shoppers inside.”

A shopper said: “It was an awful thing for the little girl to see.”

Scotland Yard said two males, aged 17 and 19, were arrested after the fight.

A police officer stands guard outside the supermarket on FridayNigel Howard
A police officer stands guard outside the supermarket on FridayNigel Howard

The death is the 107th homicide investigation launched by the Met and British Transport Police in 2020, compared with 118 at this time last year.  

The victim is the 13th teenager to be violently killed in London this year.

Detective Chief Inspector Vicky Tunstall, of the Met’s Specialist Crime Command, said:  “My deepest condolences are with the family of this young man. I want to reassure them that my team and I are working to give them the answers they deserve.

“While our investigation is still in its early days, it would appear that an altercation occurred between two groups of males in the Garratt Lane area, outside Sainsbury’s, at around 4.50pm on Thursday evening. It was during this altercation that the victim was stabbed and sadly, later died.

“This was a busy area, very near to the shopping centre within Wandsworth. There will be people who saw or heard something suspicious that could help us to piece together the final moments for the victim and possibly identify who was responsible. It is these people we urgently need to speak to.” 

She added: “All calls will be treated with sensitivity and confidentiality.”

Police placed an “extensive crime scene” around the scene, and nearby roads remained closed this morning.

Detectives were today trawling through CCTV images. A local said: “There were a gang of youths prowling up and down the street. They looked very agitated and as if they were looking for someone or running away.”

A witness said: “It all started in the cemetery near my house. We heard shouting. A bit later armed police were searching the area.”

A neighbour added: “Our residents’ WhatsApp group has been going crazy. The fight was on our doorsteps. We don’t know if the boys are local. Everyone is worried it may be someone they know.”

<p>Another crime scene at a nearby burial ground</p>Nigel Howard

Another crime scene at a nearby burial ground

Nigel Howard

Mayor Sadiq Khan described the killing as “appalling and tragic”, and urged people to help the police. He said: “We must all redouble our efforts to end the scourge of violent crime on our streets.

Detective Superintendent Owain Richards said: “My thoughts are first and foremost with the family of this young boy who lost his life. This is understandably a shocking incident that will have deep impact on the wider community. I know that the detectives on this case will be working tirelessly to understand what led up to this tragic incident and ultimately to bring the person or people responsible to justice.”

The Metropolitan Police is asking anyone who has information, video or images that could help with the investigation to call 101 reference CAD 5042/29 Oct.

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