Three teens have been incarcerated for murdering a 15-year-old aspiring musician in a pre-planned gang attack.
Tashaun Aird was hit in the chest and back nine times after he and his friends fled through a Hackney park on the evening of May 1 last year.
After a trial of Old Bailey, a 16-year-old youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was found guilty of murdering Tashaun and intentionally injuring a 16-year-old boy.
Aspiring musician Tashaun Aird, 15, was stabbed to death in East London on May 1 last year
Judge Angela Rafferty, QC, said he “ showed no mercy ” when she sentenced him to a life of at least 17 years, with an additional four years to run simultaneously.
The 18-year-old Romaine Williams-Reid, who played a smaller role, received a 12-year sentence for manslaughter and two and a half years, simultaneously, for injuries.
Tashaun was cut in the chest and back nine times after he and his friends fled through a Hackney park
Another 16-year-old was imprisoned for 12 years for Tashaun’s manslaughter and four years at the same time for deliberate injury.
The judge said to the defendants, “A group of unarmed young people who do not pose any threat to you were attacked by you in the park.
“Tashaun was stabbed eight times. The fatal stab wound was delivered outside the park when he was absolutely defenseless.
“I don’t think Tashaun was part of the gang at all. He even said so much to you. ‘
She said the “planned and targeted attack” was fully visible to members of the public and included the use of weapons, including a Samurai sword, a zombie knife, and a rambo knife.
Tashaun is said to have had a ‘passion for music’ and his family only learned that he had been accepted by a music school after his death.
The judge said, “It may be that his music was somehow related to this attack, but it is unlikely that we will ever really know.”
Neither victim was connected to the target audience, she said, adding, “This was a terrible waste of a young life.”
Just three months earlier in February 2019, the aspiring musician, who produced afrobeat and drill music, told his mom that one of the gang members stabbed him in an attempt to kill him.
A fourth suspect, 16-year-old Caden Stewart, became unwell in custody and was taken to hospital where he died on June 27, 20 days after he was charged with murder.
Prosecutor Julian Evans had told the trial how Tashaun, who had previously been attacked, had a chat with friends at Somerford Gardens in Hackney, northeast London.
Earlier that day, he told Williams-Reid that he was not part of the Red Pitch Hackney gang, judges heard.
Members of the victim’s family were seen with flowers at the Hackney estate last year
Police in Hackney, East London, after the 15-year-old was killed
Williams-Reid then spoke to Stewart, who took off in an Uber taxi along with the other defendants, the court heard.
Mr. Evans said that Williams-Reid had been watching Tashaun and his friends before the others arrived “on purpose for violence.”
As the target audience spread, the two youths, both armed with swords, ran after Tashaun and one of them “repeated” him repeatedly.
A tent was set up in Hackney when police investigated the murder that took place last May
Meanwhile, Stewart, who reportedly had a sword, chased the 16-year-old victim and stabbed him in the back, the court heard.
Tashaun managed to leave the park and took refuge for a while at a nearby house, but was hunted down and stabbed again by the same young person who was convicted of murder.
The young people who left in the Uber and Williams-Reid cycled away on the injured boy’s bike, jury members were told.
The 16-year-old victim, bleeding from a wound in his back, sought help from a nearby store and then made a full recovery.
Family members leave flowers at the place in Hackney on May 2 after stabbing
Police officers investigate the scene in Hackney after the boy was stabbed to death
Tashaun managed to walk a short distance before falling face down on the floor. He was pronounced dead 45 minutes later.
Nine wounds were found in a post-mortem examination, with a fatal 11 cm deep stab wound to the chest.
Williams-Reid of Romford, East London, and the two Hackney boys denied all charges against them.
Tashaun’s family said, “Our beautiful and talented Tashaun was only 15 years old when he was attacked and murdered, in a meaningless and unprovoked attack on him.
Romaine Williams-Reid, 18, who played a minor role, was sentenced to 12 years of manslaughter and two and a half years simultaneously of injury
“There can be no comfort for us if these people are not on the street and out of danger.
“But no words could ever describe the pain, numbness, and sheer fear we’ve felt as a family since he was so suddenly taken from us on May 1.
“No family should go through what we’ve been through in the past seven months. You hear about knife crime and never expect it to be your own crime.”