London

Jaden Moodie: Family deny reports of murdered teen's gang links

Jaden Moodie Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Jaden Moodie had recently moved to London with his mum from Nottingham

The family of London teenager Jaden Moodie say he had no links to gangs and was "murdered in cold blood".

Jaden Moodie, 14, was stabbed to death by attackers who knocked him off a moped in Leyton on Tuesday in what police believe was a targeted attack.

The teenager had moved from Nottingham to London with his mother six months ago for a "new start".

No arrests have been made over Jaden's death, the Met Police has said.

Speaking near to the scene where Jaden was stabbed to death, his cousin said in a statement that "no one deserves to die in that horrific way".

Leon Green added: "It has been very distressing that the majority of reports had mentioned Jaden being part of London gangs.

"I would like to stress that Jaden had absolutely no affiliation with gangs."

Image caption Jaden's cousin Leon Green read out a statement to reporters near the crime scene

Standing alongside Jaden's mother Jada Bailey, Mr Green said the teenager had aspirations of joining a boxing academy and had a personality which was "infectious".

He added: "The focus needs to be on the fact that he was brutally murdered in cold blood and deserves a fair chance at justice.

"If there are people in our streets who are capable of killing a 14-year-old child then no-one is safe."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Jaden Moodie was struck by a vehicle while on a moped and stabbed to death

Additional police officers have been in the area where Jaden were killed.

Members of the public were being encouraged to talk to them about any concerns they had, or to share information.

Jaden was hit by a black Mercedes B Class at about 18:30 GMT on Bickley Road and then stabbed several times by three attackers as he lay unconscious in the road.

The car was found on Wednesday in the nearby Carlisle Road area of Leyton, a few hundred metres away, and remains there for forensic examination.

In a statement published online, Heathcote School and Science in Chingford, where Jaden attended, said it was offering support to pupils and staff "during this difficult time".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Jaden was stabbed several times in Leyton

Waltham Forest, where Leyton is located, has been blighted by gang crime in recent years and the council announced in June it would set aside £3m over the next four years into a prevention programme.

Council leader Clare Coghill said: "The police cannot tackle the violence on our streets alone."

She added: "To stay silent is to support murderers."

Walthamstow MP Stella Creasy told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "Communities like mine are crying out for help and support."

She said she had been "getting up in parliament and begging and pleading with ministers to focus on this and give us the resources".

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