London

Police car warning before Tyereece Johnson's moped death

Trinity Road's junction with South Park Road Image copyright Google
Image caption The moped and Met Police car crashed near Trinity Road's junction with South Park Road in Wimbledon

Police cars following three teenagers on a moped were told repeatedly to pull back before it crashed and one of the teenagers died, an inquest heard.

Tyereece Johnson, 16, died on 17 July 2017 after being thrown from the moped, which was believed to have been involved in an attempted robbery.

Inner West London Coroner's Court also heard a pursuit across south London had not been authorised.

A report by the police watchdog will be released at the inquest's close.

The trio were being tracked by a police helicopter feeding information on their location to cars on the ground in the early hours of 16 July, the inquest heard.

'No helmets'

The court was told that on at least two occasions, a female officer could be heard saying over the radio: "Can you try not to follow the vehicle too closely please?"

PC Lee Hunt, a tactical pursuit adviser on the night of the crash, told the court he did not authorise a pursuit, because the trio were not wearing helmets and due to the risk to other road users and pedestrians.

He advised that police cars attempted to position themselves ahead of the moped and lay down a stinger device to bring it to a halt.

He also told the inquest he was unaware there were two police cars following the moped.

Footage presented to the inquest showed the moped and its hooded riders weaving a convoluted route from Clapham Common to Wimbledon in south London, before crashing into the back of the police car and being flung in different directions.

'Brilliant footballer'

The inquest heard that Tyereece died of his injuries in hospital the following day.

Tyereece's mother Samantha Cohen described the teenager as a "brilliant" footballer and Chelsea fan, who was scouted by the Royal Ballet, according to a statement read by coroner Dr Shirley Radcliffe.

It added Ms Cohen and her son moved to Croydon from north London after she became concerned he had "fallen into the wrong crowd".

The inquest is scheduled to last for eight days.

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