A 17-year-old college student from West London was stabbed to death after a row over payment for drugs.
The death of Jamalie Maleek Deacon Matthew in November, 2020, was ruled a murder last month, and now the teenager who committed the fatal stabbing has been jailed for life.
The 16 year old, who cannot be named due to his age, appeared at Harrow Crown Court on Thursday (July 29) where he was sentenced to life imprisonment – to serve a minimum of 16 years – for the murder.
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He had previously been found guilty of murder at the same court on Thursday, June 17.
The court heard how on November 12, 2020, Jamalie, who was from Brent, had left college to meet a friend.
The pair then headed to Northwick Park, Wembley at 3.35pm.
Jamalie’s friend had received a phone call from an unknown number asking to meet him to buy some cannabis. It is now known that the caller was the defendant.
Once in the park, Jamalie and his friend approached the defendant. The friend handed over a number of bags of cannabis but the defendant then refused to hand over any money.
He drew a knife from a black sheath which was hidden under his clothing to threaten Jamalie and his friend.
Jamalie drew a copper pipe that he had in his bag to defend himself and was then stabbed in the abdomen and the right shin by the defendant.
Witnesses told the court that Jamalie was hunched over holding his stomach and barely made it a short distance before collapsing.
London Ambulance Service paramedics and police officers arrived swiftly but despite their best efforts, Jamalie was pronounced dead at the scene. A post-mortem examination gave the cause of death as a stab wound to the abdomen.
The defendant walked off after the stabbing and officers immediately started the search for him. They initially caught up with him in the Stonebridge area but he ran on to a railway line to get away.
Four days later he handed himself in at Colindale Police Station and was arrested. In the process of running from the police, he had discarded a school ID card and his mobile phone. Officers were able to link this to him.
CCTV enquiries and phone data showed that the defendant had been in the area twenty minutes before the stabbing and had boasted over text that he was planning to rob Jamalie’s friend for cannabis.
CCTV showed the entire attack on Jamalie, from the defendant arriving in the park to the three boys meeting and the fight that then ensued.
Detective Chief Inspector Linda Bradley said: “Nothing can bring Jamalie back to his family and our thoughts are with them as the legal process now comes to a close.
“No family should have to go through such a needless and senseless loss, especially in such horrific circumstances. This was made worse still by the not guilty plea entered by the defendant who, despite the overwhelming evidence against him, made the family endure the trial process.
“Today’s sentencing is the result of a meticulous and diligent investigation by my officers and I thank them for their commitment to getting justice for Jamalie and his family.
“I am proud that their efforts were recognised by Judge Dean, presiding, who awarded Judge’s Commendations to Detective Sergeant Okiki Okunola and Detective Constable Atiq Haque for their efforts.”
In a victim impact statement read in court, Jamalie’s mum said: “Jamalie was the most loving and caring son and brother. He was happy and a joy to be around. He was polite and kind and I was so proud to call him my son.
“He was never violent, hurtful or bad to anyone. He would always see the best in everyone and was fiercely loyal to his family. He was forgiving in nature.
“Jamalie was naturally musically gifted. He played the guitar including classical, bass and acoustic, and he also played the keyboard. He had asked for a bass guitar for his 18th birthday which was only twelve days after his senseless murder.
“I’m grateful I have videos of Jamalie playing the guitar. Although sad, I find comfort watching them. Jamalie also enjoyed playing football and was part of the school football league.”