London

Stephen Lawrence inquiry: Calls include 'significant information'

Stephen Lawrence
Image caption Stephen Lawrence was 18 when he was murdered at a south-east London bus stop in 1993

A BBC Crimewatch reconstruction of the murder of Stephen Lawrence generated 30 calls, including some "significant information".

The Met Police called it a "positive result" and has offered a £20,000 reward to find those responsible.

Stephen's father, Neville Lawrence, appealed for witnesses to come forward on Monday's programme.

The reconstruction aired on the eve of what would have been Stephen's 42nd birthday.

Mr Lawrence was stabbed to death in an unprovoked racist assault on 22 April 1993 as he waited at a bus stop in Eltham, south-east London with a friend.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Gary Dobson and David Norris were found guilty of murder in 2012

Gary Dobson and David Norris were jailed for life in January 2012 after being found guilty of being involved in the attack, but detectives have always maintained others were involved.

Lead investigator Chris Le Pere said: "Given the length of time this inquiry has been running, I am happy with the positive result.

"Some of the calls hold significant information and will take time to work through."

The Met also revealed on Monday that a handbag strap found at the scene of Stephen Lawrence's murder may have been part of a homemade weapon used by his killers.

The strap was recovered a few metres away from the south-east London bus stop where the 18 year old was attacked by six white men in August 1993.

Detectives discounted the strap for years because it was mistakenly logged as being found 80 metres away.

The DNA of an unknown woman has been found on the bag strap, the Met said.

Detectives believe the DNA is that of the main user of the bag and are attempting to trace her, although they are not linking the woman with the murder directly.

Image copyright Me Police
Image caption A misunderstanding of a crime scene examiner's field notes meant the strap was thought to have been found much further away from the murder scene than it actually was

They now want to find who owned the bag from which the strap came and discover why it was at the murder scene.

Police are also trying to trace a man reportedly seen in a distinctive green jacket with a V emblem near Well Hall Road roundabout at about the time Mr Lawrence was attacked.

CCTV footage, recently digitally enhanced, showed the man in a nearby off-licence hours before the murder took place.

In a sketch by a police artist, based on their accounts, the wearer of the jacket has light reddish hair. However the man in the CCTV pictures is dark-haired.

Police believe the man could be a witness.

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption The image of the jacket was previously circulated to the media in 1993 and 2013

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