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Metropolitan Police End Investigation Into Stephen Lawrence's Death

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Metropolitan Police End Investigation Into Stephen Lawrence's Death

The Met Police have today confirmed they are no longer actively investigating the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence.

The case of Stephen Lawrence, who was killed in Eltham, south London in 1993, has reached the stage where all lines of enquiry have been completed.

Doreen and Neville Lawrence launched a private investigation into their son's death. Credit: PA
Doreen and Neville Lawrence launched a private investigation into their son's death. Credit: PA

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The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service Cressida Dick said: "This was an appalling racist murder and I am sad that we have been unable to secure further convictions for Stephen, his family and friends.

"I, and the senior investigator in charge of the case, Chris Le Pere, have met with Baroness Lawrence and Mr Lawrence and fully explained the work the team have been doing, and why we are now at this stage.

"The investigation has now moved to an 'inactive' phase, but I have given Stephen's family the assurance that we will continue to deal with any new information that comes to light.

"The investigation into Stephen's murder will also be periodically reviewed for any further investigative opportunities which may arise, for example with advances in technology.

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"Mr Brooks, who was with Stephen on the night he died, has also been advised of the decision.

"We were able to secure two convictions following a determined investigation in 2012 but it is well known that other suspects were also involved in the events which unfolded that night and it is deeply frustrating that we have been unable to bring them to justice.

"As a result of ceaseless campaigning for justice by Stephen's parents, profound changes have happened in policing, the law and wider society. I pay tribute to them for their courage and achievements.

"And today my thoughts are with them and all Stephen's loved ones."

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Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Stephen Lawrence was just 18 when he was murdered during an unprovoked attack on 22 April 1993. He and his friend Duwayne Brooks were attacked by a group of men.

Initially, five suspects were arrested and questioned about the killing, with two charged with murder. However, the charges were discontinued at court.

In 1997, an investigation taken out by Kent Police found weaknesses in the original investigation.

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In February 1999, the Macpherson report was published which accused the Met of being institutionally racist, making 70 recommendations. One of those was that the Government should get rid of the legal principle that stops a suspect from being tried twice for the same crime.

The 'double jeopardy' rule was scrapped in 2005 by the government at the time, meaning police and the CPS could consider a retrial.

Two of the original suspects, Gary Dobson and David Norris were charged with murder in 2010.

Gary Dobson (left) and David Norris were convicted of the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence. Credit: PA
Gary Dobson (left) and David Norris were convicted of the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence. Credit: PA
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Both of them were found guilty of murder in January 2012. Both were sentenced to life imprisonment.

An investigation into the three unknown suspects turned out to be unsuccessful.

In the statement released, the Met Police said: "Despite the efforts of the investigation team, those enquiries have now come to an end and we have been unable to take this any further at this time."

Featured Image Credit: Metropolitan Police

Amelia Ward
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